Statement regarding Greek-Turkish agreement at NATO summit in Madrid
By John Sitilides1 <email@example.com>, Executive Director, The Western Policy CenterSacramento, CA. 8 July 1997 "The Greek-Turkish "convergence of views" regarding outstanding disputes represents a hopeful development for security and stability in the critical southeastern Europe region.
"Respect for sovereignty, international law and international agreements must form the bedrock of a substantive Greek-Turkish relationship. Both nations will be winners if they adhere closely to these principles, with positive impact on the U.N.-sponsored Cyprus settlement talks now underway.
"Greece has acknowledged Turkish interests in preserving international access through the Aegean Sea, as well as the right of navigational freedom in international airspace. Turkey has acknowledged the inviolability of Greece's borders, and the need to refrain from the threat or use of force.
"Now is the time for careful and precise follow through on important details. There is continued Greek-Turkish disagreement regarding the history and intent of various international treaties, and the Turkish Parliament is still authorized to declare war if Greece lawfully exercises its right to extend its territorial waters. Furthermore, recent threats against Cyprus by the new Turkish government are completely inconsistent with the spirit of this agreement. Appropriately, we will closely monitor statements and developments as they continue in the weeks and months ahead.
"Secretary of State Albright and her advisors are to be commended for their attention to the region. Her strong and evident interest in resolving potentially explosive issues will help determine whether the U.S. can successfully promote a peaceful and more productive relationship between the two NATO allies."
1[The Western Policy Center is a public policy corporation monitoring U.S. geostrategic interests in southeastern Europe.]