Tsipras advocates Turkey-Greece cooperation

Greek PM Alexis Tsipras says cooperation between Turkey and Greece can change all balances in Europe

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras gives a speech in Istanbul during his two-day official visit to Turkey.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Wednesday in a joint press conference with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu that "A cooperation between Turkey and Greece can change all balances in Europe and we should assess this."

Tsipras said that his first official visit to Turkey as a prime minister took place at a critical time when important developments concerning the region and the world emerged.

The two leaders, Tsipras and Davutoglu, mostly focused on the huge flow of refugees who are escaping from the war in Syria and trying to cross into other European countries through Turkey and Greece.

Tsipras said, "All these migrant flows, humanitarian crises in Aegean Sea and terrorism issues create a negative atmosphere in our region and we need to cooperate to overcome these problems."

Turkish PM Davutoglu said that both Turkey and Greece are "victim" of the humanitarian crisis in Syria along with the refugees.

Davutoglu said, "As the sufferers of all these problems , we decided to conduct bilateral technical work."

Both leaders stressed that Turkey and Greece share a huge burden in the refugee crisis, adding that other international actors - the European Union and United Nations Security Council - should also take action to assist them.

Davutoglu added, "We disagree with efforts to put the entire burden on two countries."

Touching upon the Cyprus issue, Davutoglu said Turkey and Greece have an opportunity to act on rectifying the partition of Cyprus.

"There is a window of opportunity right now over the Cyprus issue. The negotiations are going on. We have a common approach with Greece to contribute positively to the talks," he said. 

Meanwhile, the Greek prime minister also met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Presidential Palace in Ankara on Wednesday.

The closed-door meeting between the two leaders lasted for one hour.

TRTWorld and agencies