German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Monday expressed his "great respect" for Greece, both for the heavy burden placed upon it during the crisis and for the actions taken by the new government on migration and to speed up the pace of reforms. The German minister made the statement in a joint press conference with his Greek counterpart Nikos Dendias, after their meeting in Berlin.
Maas asked for the implementation of the EU-Turkey Joint Statement on migration and criticised Ankara's actions in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). He called for a de-escalation of tension and the resumption of talks on the Cyprus issue.
On the sale of armaments to Turkey, the German minister said that all future decisions will be taken on the basis of current political conditions but pointed out that there are many armament deliveries agreed in the past that have not yet been executed due to German restrictions on arms exports.
Dendias called Germany's stance on migration "constructive" and expressed support for a comprehensive approach by the European Union, with emphasis on both respecting human rights and solidarity for the countries that bear the brunt of the problem.
He noted that Turkey's actions do not help in reducing tensions and referred specifically to Ankara's announced intention to open the fenced-off town of Famagusta. "Such statements rather exacerbate the situation and do not help in finding a solution to the Cyprus issue," Dendias said.
On Monday evening, Dendias will be received by the Bundestag President Wolfgang Schaeuble, while earlier he had a meeting with the heads of the German Society for Foreign Policy and the Science and Policy Foundation.