Mitsotakis: The basis for the strategic autonomy of the EU is the Greek-French agreement

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The Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis met this morning with a delegation of the French Senate visiting our country, under its President, Gérard Larcher.

During the meeting, the bilateral relations were reviewed, which are at an excellent level, with emphasis on the prospects of their deepening at all levels.

“I believe that the Strategic Partnership Agreement that we signed with President Macron puts our bilateral relations at a level that is in line with the depth of our historical relationship,” the Prime Minister said at the beginning of the meeting. “We want, together with the Parliament (of the Greeks), to strengthen our partnership,” said Mr. Larcher.

Particular reference was made to the very close cooperation in the field of defense, based on the broad understanding of security in the Eastern Mediterranean and the wider region. Mr. Mitsotakis underlined the strategic importance of the region, among others, as a logistics hub to meet the energy needs of the European Union.

The two sides discussed the pillars of the French Presidency of the Council of the EU in the first half of 2022, which include strengthening Europe’s strategic autonomy. Kyriakos Mitsotakis pointed out that the Greek-French cooperation on the one hand strengthens the capabilities of NATO and at the same time can be a basis for strengthening the strategic autonomy of the Old Epirus.

The Prime Minister pointed out that France is a particularly important economic partner, which is one of the leading investors in Greece. He mentioned the fact that the French companies did not withdraw from our country during the crisis and that today there is a great interest for the increase of the French investments in Greece.

In this context, he stressed that the government has insisted on its reform work despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus, and referred to the wider reform of the economic climate in order to further strengthen Greece’s position as an investment destination.

The Prime Minister informed Mr. Larcher about the Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus issue, emphasizing that the proposal for two states is in no way a basis for any dialogue. Referring to the European perspective of the Western Balkans, Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed that the accession process should begin as soon as possible, adding that otherwise other forces will try to displace the EU footprint in the region.

Mr. Larcher told Mr. Mitsotakis that the Senate delegation will also visit Chios, where it will see the accommodation of asylum seekers. “You will see the progress we have made, which is very important. “You will see that the situation has not only changed in terms of numbers, but also that we are now able to host these people in decent conditions,” the Prime Minister replied.

The meeting was also attended by the Director of the Diplomatic Office of the Prime Minister, Ambassador Eleni Sourani.

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