Cyprus and Greece coordinate their cooperation on diaspora
CNA - CYPRUS/Nicosia 29/01/2020
Cyprus’ Presidential Commissioner, Photis Photiou, and Greek Deputy Foreign Minister, responsible for Greeks Abroad, Kostas Vlasis, met on Wednesday, in Nicosia, to discuss the goals and priorities with regard to diaspora cooperation between the two countries.
Speaking at the Presidential Palace, after the meeting, Vlasis said that the two countries aim to strengthen their ties, by looking into the possibilities for further cooperation.
The Greek Deputy Foreign Minister also said that they discussed the issue of missing persons, noting that it is not possible to have 810 families still searching for their people. He said that they will cooperate on this matter with Photiou in order to put an end to this decades-old problem.
Speaking about trilateral cooperation schemes with Egypt and Israel, Vlasis said that these cooperation schemes are based on a positive agenda in the broader region and promote a positive narrative, bringing people and the diaspora closer together.
Greece will continue to support a mutually acceptable, just and viable Cyprus settlement which is unthinkable without the withdrawal of Turkish troops and the termination of the anachronistic system of guarantees, Vlasis said and expressed the support of Greek PM Mitsotakis in fostering respect for the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus.
Taking the floor, Photiou said that they had the chance to discuss their cooperation and set priorities on how to better engage the diaspora. He added that they discussed promoting particular actions, in line with a Memorandum of Understanding they signed recently.
They also agreed to continue their productive trilateral cooperation on diaspora issues with other countries, such as Israel, Egypt and Armenia which “strengthen further the role of Cyprus and Greece as European pillars of stability, security, peace and prosperity in the region” as Photiou said.
According to the Presidential Commissioner, the two sides are considering the possibility of extend their cooperation, to include more countries, such as Ireland and Portugal.
Photiou said finally that a series of events is taking place between February 20-22, in Athens, highlighting the importance of the Greek language, while more events like this may take place in countries other than Greece and Cyprus in the future.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.
ENDS, CYPRUS NEWS AGENCY