Op-ed: The difficult diplomacy toward a Greek-Turkish dialogue

By Panagiotis Ioakeimidis*

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, and the entire international community urge that there be a Greek-Turkish dialogue in order to defuse ongoing tensions.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, aside from the list of groundless accusations that he makes against Greece in a letter that he sent to the UN and NATO, maintains that, "Despite Turkey's stance in support of a dialogue and cooperation, Greece is avoiding dialogue."

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Thus, even as the Turkish foreign minister claims to want dialogue, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan publicly declared that he does not consider Greece as a worthy interlocutor!

In this toxic climate, when the other side speaks, for example, of the prospect of Turkey occupying Greek islands, how can one shape the conditions for a dialogue>

How can we "bind" Turkey to a truly cooperative framework?

There is very little, if any, room for that to occur.

We have reached the point of being at the verge of war because when we had an opportunity to "reach an understanding with Turkey based on dialogue", as was the case in 2004, we did not do so.

We believed that "time is on our side".

We now see the results of that rationale.

Yet, despite all that, and as Utopian as it may sound to some, there is no option but to persist in pursuing the objective of dialogue and of "binding" Turkey in cooperative frameworks, especially the EU.

The French foreign minister was quite clear during her recent visit to Athens.

"It is natural and useful with an allied and neighbouring country to maintain an open...

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