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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-09-19

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Karamanlis, Rasmussen meet in Athens

  • [01] Karamanlis, Rasmussen meet in Athens

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on Friday received his Danish counterpart Anders Fogh Rasmussen for a meeting focusing mainly on European issues, energy policy and climate change.

    "It is absolutely clear that international cooperation is imperative in order to deal with these huge [environmental] problems," Karamanlis stressed after the meeting.

    The two premiers also noted the excellent level of bilateral relations between Greece and Denmark and a common desire to develop these further, particularly in the areas of trade, investments and research, while they also discussed the prospects of joint business projects in shipping.

    On a European level, Karamanlis and Rasmussen discussed the fate of the Lisbon Treaty and its implementation after it was rejected in an Irish referendum, the issue of EU enlargement and the latest developments in the Western Balkans, and the situation in the Caucasus in view of Greece's upcoming presidency of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

    Karamanlis said that he outlined Greece's positions concerning the dispute over the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and attempts to find a solution, and briefed Rasmussen on the latest effort to negotiate a solution to the Cyprus issue.

    Immigration, asylum and European-wide cooperation to guard the EU's external borders, which is a matter of particular interest to Greece, were also covered during their talks.

    Karamanlis said that the crucial question of combating climate change and dealing with environmental threats was emphasised during the meeting, with the two sides discussing possible cooperation between Greece and Denmark in the use of renewable energy sources.

    The impact of the current global economic crisis on Europe and the priorities for protecting the dynamism of Europe's economies and providing relief to its more vulnerable groups was another issue discussed at length, the Greek premier added.

    Replying to reporters' questions, Karamanlis said that Europe did not face problems on the same scale as the U.S. but only problems that arose as result of the crisis in the U.S. financial system, adding that the EU had rules allowing it to play a regulatory role in the financial sector.

    Like Karamanlis, the Danish premier emphasised the importance of action against climate change and the need for Europe to lessen its energy dependency on fossil fuels by adopting renewable energy sources.

    On the issue of illegal immigration, Rasmussen spoke up in support of effective repatriation policies for illegal immigrants, while he categorically condemned Russia's actions in violating the sovereign rights of Georgia.

    In response to questions, meanwhile, he ruled out standing for the post of NATO secretary-general at this time, saying that he wanted to remain in his position as Denmark's prime minister.

    A working dinner for the two premiers and their delegations followed the meeting.

    Caption: Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis (L) on Friday received his Danish counterpart Anders Fogh Rasmussen (R) in Athens for talks on European and other issues. ANA-MPA - Gouilielmos Antoniou.

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