Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis expressed his congratulations to the Coast Guard and the Armed Forces on Wednesday during the debate of draft laws for the ratification of the agreements between the Hellenic Republic and the Italian Republic for the delimitation of the respective maritime zones and between the Hellenic Republic and the government of the Arab Republic of Egypt for the delimitation of the Exclusive Economic Zone between the two States.
Referring to the largest rescue operation carried out in recent months in the Aegean and the rescue of almost 100 people, the Prime Minister stressed that "it is another strong proof that our action at sea is not only national but also humanitarian."
At the same time, he said that this is the best answer to those who insist on spreading fake news about the alleged indifference of Greece to people who are in danger at sea.
Mitsotakis stressed that this is "a meeting of special importance", as the Greek Parliament is called to "ratify two emblematic agreements with Italy and Egypt."
As he said, the relevant texts also include explicit regulations for our wider national interests. "They therefore have a major historical and political weight," he said.
He advised to be careful to what is said in the parliament because what is said could be used as evidence to undermine the national strategy of the country.
He stressed that the two agreements were signed a few weeks apart, resolving long pending issues with neighbouring countries. He stressed that they were based on the international law and are impeding illegal actions in the region, "making our seas a new reality of peace and security."
He pointed out that above all with these agreements Greece returns to a role that not only deserves it but must also justify it every day. "The role of guarantor of the eastern borders but also of the interests of Europe in the Mediterranean."
He added: "The role of ambassador of international law, the role of a stable arm of dialogue and cooperation on this very troubled side of the map. It is precisely this role that is increasingly recognized internationally."
With a bill that will be submitted directly to Parliament, "Greece extends its territorial waters to the west from 6 to 12 miles."
He stressed: "Greece is growing. Others have said so. But we are the ones who put it into practice. We thus proceed to a sea area specifically that of the Ionian and Ionian islands up to Cape Tainaro in the Peloponnese in the exercise of our undisputed sovereign right, in accordance with Article 3 of the Convention on the Law of the Sea."
"Perhaps there is no better confirmation of the correctness of our choices than the spasmodic reactions that they unfortunately cause in Turkey. Of course not to its people but to its leading team," the prime minister said.
He stressed that with its tactics, the neighboring country "is increasingly trapped in the nets of political isolation" and referred to its spasmodic decision to turn a World Heritage site such as Hagia Sophia into a mosque. It is part of an ongoing crisis that constitutes a strategic defeat and will escalate unless this wrong choice is changed in time," he said.
"I will not expand much further because our positions towards the neighboring country are crystal clear", the prime minister underlined and continued "our determination in defending our national rights has already been shown when needed and our Armed Forces are always on alert."
He also pointed out that "the stronger Greece is in the field, the stronger it feels at the table of dialogue because the weapons of international law, good neighborly relations, civilised behaviour are irresistible weapons" and stressed: "Therefore Greece has every reason to lead Turkey to the arena of legality - that is why I will repeat that the way to reach an agreement on the one outstanding issue we have with Turkey, that of the delimitation of maritime zones in the Aegean and the eastern Mediterranean, is open, it can also be open for Ankara. But on one condition: to stop immediately the provocations. After all, the Greeks were the first in history to establish the olive branch as a symbol of peace."