“We want this trilateral partnership to have a strategic perspective based on solid foundations”

Statements at the 1st Trilateral Greece-Cyprus-Jordan Summit

I would like to warmly thank President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades and King Abdullah of Jordan for the meeting we had today, the first Trilateral Greece, Cyprus and Jordan Summit.

I believe that we are launching an exceptional initiative, and even though at a time when significant challenges are ahead of us, there are, also, significant opportunities in our region in the wider region of the Eastern Mediterranean.

As we emphasized today, this trilateral partnership is intended to have a strategic perspective and should therefore be based on solid foundation.

Firstly, our countries have important historical, cultural and economic ties with Jordan, ties of friendship between our peoples. So, on these ties we want to work.

Secondly, we have established our position as a pillar of stability, peace and security in the wider region.

In this context, we discussed extensively on international developments in Syria, underlining the need to ensure peace as soon as possible and to lay the foundation for a future of democracy and reconciliation.

We stressed the enormous challenge our countries face, in relation to the refugee issue and of course the need for the international community to actively and effectively support the countries receiving vast numbers of refugees and addressing the severe humanitarian consequences. Let’s not forget that Jordan currently hosts almost 1.5 million refugees. And of course, we must not forget that Greece and Cyprus bear the weight as frontline countries at the east and southeast borders of the European Union, they carry the weight of Europe.

Additionally, we confirmed our commitment to address security threats in our region and particularly the phenomena of international terrorism, violent extremism and radicalization. In this context, we support the process of Aqaba and promote initiatives for peace and stability, such as, the Summit organized in Rhodes by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

We, also, discussed about the Middle East, stressing the importance to the resumption of credible, direct talks on a two-state solution.

This is the solution that we support, the solution we are promoting and we believe that we should return to the process of dialogue for a two-state solution where the Palestinian state will live peacefully next to Israel within the 1967 borders and with East Jerusalem as its capital. And we stressed that all the efforts of the international community must be directed to resume the talks.

We talked, of course, about the Cyprus problem. We underlined the importance of finding a fair and viable solution on the basis of the resolutions of the United Nations and the status of the Republic of Cyprus as a member state of the European Union and, of course, without guarantees or occupation troops.

Turkey, I believe, should reaffirm its true commitment to a peaceful solution to the issue within the framework and parameters set by the United Nations.

We all agreed on the particular importance of the crisis resolution in the Eastern Mediterranean. Not only for the future of the region, but I would say, for the future of Europe as a whole. In this context, we reaffirmed our commitment to supporting the strengthening of the cooperation between the European Union and Jordan, given the great importance that as a country Jordan is a pillar of stability in the region.

And of course, we agreed to intensify our dialogue on the issues concerning the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the Arab League.

With President Anastasiades and King Abdullah, we also agreed to extend our trilateral partnership in areas of common interest. In the areas of Renewable Energy Resources, Water Management, Agriculture, Aquaculture, Tourism, Merchant Shipping, Protection of Antiquities and Health.

We signed today a Memorandum of Understanding on Renewable Energy Resources, which establishes the ground and the direction of our cooperation in this strategic field.

We have expressed that we are ready to exchange knowledge on tourism issues and experience and encourage synergies between public and private stakeholders to support joint projects.

We decided to strengthen our partnership in the field of maritime transport. That is why we signed today a Mutual Recognition Certificate for Maritime Capabilities Certificates, between Greece and Jordan and Cyprus and Jordan.

Also, the need to protect antiquities, as I said, and the preservation and development of historical and archaeological sites, has been recognized, with the aim of preserving and promoting the rich historical and cultural heritage of our countries. A common heritage for humanity, I would say. And to this end, we have signed today a trilateral Agreement on Prevention of Theft, Clandestine Excavation and Illicit Import, Export or Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property and, of course, our cooperation to promote their return to what they have gone abroad.

Finally, we have agreed to extend our cooperation in the important sector of Health through the exchange of experience and knowledge, with emphasis on prevention and disease control.

In conclusion, I would like once again to warmly thank President Anastasiades for his hospitality and to express my deep conviction that today we are starting a partnership with very important prospects regarding the relations of the countries but also the broader role, the potential that this cooperation can have for the wider region. A dynamic that can have a substantial effect, I repeat, not only among our countries, but also play a catalytic role for the promotion of peace and stability in the wider region and, why not, a catalytic role for the resolution of crises which have been torturing this region for many decades.