AK: As you known, yesterday we went to Greece, where we met, first with the Greek Foreign Minister and subsequently with the Greek Prime Minister in the presence of course of the Greek Foreign Minister as well.
I want to express our full satisfaction with the two-hour meeting which we had with the Greek Prime Minister. It was a very comprehensive and substantive meeting and I consider we had the opportunity to exchange views and thoughts on all the aspects that make up the Cyprus problem, primarily of course on the remaining outstanding issues to be discussed.
The support of the Greek government towards the efforts to reach a solution of the Cyprus problem as soon as possible was once again reaffirmed, without this of course proving to be at the expense of the substance and content of the solution.
We agreed that what is matters right now is the resumption of the dialogue and that this must be done as soon as possible, in our view. Namely to continue the dialogue from where it had stopped. An attempt needs to be undertaken to arrive within a range of an agreement on all the aspects related to the internal aspect of the Cyprus problem, so that we can go to an international conference, which will discuss the huge issue of the guarantees. This international conference must be prepared in order to ensure that the chances of its successful outcome, rather than its failure will be more. The Greek Prime Minister Mr. Tsipras will proceed to make moves in the coming months focusing in this direction.
I would like once again to reiterate our full satisfaction with our meeting with the Greek Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, and thank them for their principled position and consistent stand which they adhere to in the efforts to solve the Cyprus problem.
Question: You said that both parties must come within range of an agreement on all aspects of the internal aspect of the Cyprus problem. Does this also include whether the issue of the rotating presidency will be agreed…?
AK: They are issues relating to the internal aspect that is the issues regarding territory and executive power. In our opinion these issues must be within range of an agreement.
Does the Greek Government consider that there is a possibility of the dialogue resuming now?
AK: It’s difficult for me as you can understand to talk on behalf of the Greek Government. Let me put it differently. We don’t have a choice. A way to resume the dialogue must be found, without of course proceeding to concessions on issues of principle. The procedure must not prove to be to the detriment of the substance of the discussions on the Cyprus problem.
Mr. Kotzias made some statements on a radio station. He said that Greece refused to go to Switzerland to discuss the territorial issue. From your contacts and briefing you had was such an issue raised to Greece and Turkey?
AKE: I cannot speak on their behalf. My earnest request is that such questions must be addressed to Mr. Kotzias himself.
Neither do you want to say if you had some briefing on the Non Paper?
AK: We talked about everything. We had a meeting lasting two hours. As you realize we discussed everything. But I cannot speak on their behalf.
As a lot of things are being said and written today, was the issue of Kotzias raised, that is, was there any problem?
AK: We do not have any problem with Mr. Kotzias, nor did we have a problem. You remember that during the discussion regarding the Cyprus problem on Friday 18th November in the plenary of the House of Representatives, when an attempt was made by certain political parties to exploit some statements which were made by Mr. Kotzias and presented them as supposedly in favour of a policy of “protaxis” (Note: the policy of setting “preconditions” that predetermine the results of negotiations) in the view of the discussions on the Cyprus problem, I replied to them from the floor of the House stating that this is not the position of the Greek government. As it so happens I know because I had repeated contacts with both the Greek Prime Minister and the Greek Foreign Minister. I will say that during the two days that the negotiations were ongoing in Mont Pelerant, during the second phase, I had frequent contact with both the Greek Foreign Minister and the Greek Prime Minister. This is therefore not the position of the Greek government as it is being attributed.