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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-03-02

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] FM at Gaza donors summit

  • [01] FM at Gaza donors summit

    Cairo (ANA-MPA/N. Katsikas) -- Foreign minister Dora Bakoyannis represented Greece at Sunday's summit of the 80 donor countries for the reconstruction of Gaza, held in the Eyptian city of Sharm El-Sheikh at the initiative of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.

    Addressing the summit, Bakoyannis reiterated Greece's constant and active concern not only on the crisis in Gaza but also peace in the region of the Middle East, as well as its devotion to a solution of two viable states (Palestine and Israel) living side-by-side in peace and security.

    She further expressed the Greek people's solidarity with the Palestinian people, and pledged five million dollars for the people of Gaza in addition to the continuous humanitarian aid forthcoming from Greece.

    Greece, on January 1, was the first western country to despatch humanitarian aid to Gaza, which included large quantities of medical and medicinal suppolies, as well as blood, and such despatches are continuing to the present, while recently Greek state television organized a TV marathon that raised some 1.2 million euros for Gaza.

    Bakoyannis, who is accompanied by deputy foreign minister for economic diplomacy matters Miltiades Varvitsiotis, told reporters that Greece supports the efforts of the Egyptian government for an endo-Palestinian dialogue aimed at establishing a Palestinian unity government and for the peace process to proceed as quickly as possible.

    In an interview with Al Ahram newspaper, Bakoyannis stressed that stability and security in the Middle East was a priority of Greek foreign policy.

    "Greece wants to play an effective role in the Middle East peace process and strongly endorses the solution of two states," she added.

    Bakoyannis also said that Greece supports Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas in his efforts to achieve national conciliation.

    Greece, she continued, further stresses the importance of opening of all the crossings to Gaza in order for the problems faced by the Palestinians to be ameliorated, and also supports the Arab peace initiative and considers that all efforts for Gaza reconstrution are key to the peace process finding its way again.

    Bakoyannis said that the international communitymust exhaust all efforts to bring peace and stability to the Middle East region, in which "the shocking images of terror and war revealed on television must not be repeated".

    She noted that Greece backed the Egyptian initiative for ending the war in Gaza, adding that the situation there remained critical and required caution so that the truce between Israel and the Palestinians may be stabilized.

    The Greek foreign minister further noted the close and historic bonds between Greece and Egypt, which she said shared a common cultural heritage.


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