Greek Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Yiannis Valinakis calls on Turkey to implement its EU obligations
Athens, Aug 1 -- Greek Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Yiannis Valinakis has called on Turkey to immediately implement the additional protocol of the Ankara Agreement.
Speaking during a meeting of Ambassadors in the Greek capital, Mr. Valinakis said this obligation was outside any logical bargaining and efforts for compensation and accused Turkey of trying "to associate and gain compensation from this obligation with the issue of lifting the so called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots."
He also reminded that the European Union has made it clear in its September 2005 statement that the non-implementation by Turkey of the protocol will have repercussions on the negotiating procedure and Turkey's stance will be evaluated by the EU in Autumn.
"We believe," he said, "that Turkey's European prospects will lead to a modern, democratic Turkey which will respect the principles of good neighbourhood and will follow policies which are completely compatible with the principles and values in which the European structure has been founded upon."
Mr. Valinakis said that Greece has made it clear that it will be demanding a strict and fair judgement, noting that "we demand from Turkey and all other countries of south-eastern Europe dedication and commitment to the obligations they have voluntarily undertaken."
Turkey has to adapt the Ankara Agreement and extend its customs union to include all ten new EU member states, including the Republic of Cyprus, which Ankara does not recognize.
To date, Turkey has refused to open its ports and airports to Cypriot vessels and aircraft, in spite of repeated appeals and warnings from Brussels.