Greco-Turkish relations show a thaw
Friday 25 April 1997
Greek Deputy Foreign Minister, Georgios Papandreou, and his Turkish counterpart, Onur Oymen, agreed at a meeting in Malta last week to set up a committee of independent experts from both countries to discuss how to improve relations.
Despite stressing that the experts would not represent their governments and that no one should expect "immediate and sweeping results", Mr Papandreou pronounced himself satisfied that this was the right way forward for the two countries.
But the process is likely to be slow because Greece does not anticipate any face-to-face meetings between the experts. Instead they intend to communicate indirectly, through the European Union's Dutch presidency. Moreover, Greece has been at pains to underline that the experts' talks will not even constitute a "dialogue", a word which in diplomatic parlance implies something friendly and official. Rather, they will focus on "procedural issues relating to Greek-Turkish disputes".
Of these there are plenty, ranging from the Cyprus conflict to arguments over territorial waters, islands, airspace and mineral rights in the Aegean Sea.
In what looks like a conciliatory gesture ahead of the talks, Greece has postponed military flights in Greek Cypriot airspaceand has put off a joint exercise with the Greek Cypriot national guard. But the small initiatives towards Turkey have proved too much for recalcitrants in Greece's ruling Pasok party. Thirty-two members of parliament are opposed to almost any form of talks with Turkey and similar intransigence is felt in Turkey, too.
- 3 Russian girl takes her own life after parents find pornography on her computer
- 4 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Kim Kardashian on Bruce Jenner's 'story': 'We support him no matter what, and I think when the time is right, he'll talk'
Russian girl takes her own life after parents find pornography on her computer
Ball pool for adults opens in London
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A reputable organisation within the leisure i...
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...
£96000 - £200000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Looking for a better earning p...
£32000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A rapidly expanding company in ...