Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Thursday met with his Romanian counterpart Nicolae Ciucă at the Maximos Mansion. In statements after the meeting, Mitsotakis said that they reaffirmed that bilateral relations are excellent, as well as their shared faith in the principles of international law, democracy, equality and respect for human rights.

“Greece and Romania are partners in the EU and allies in NATO, something that was highlighted in the recent NATO Summit in Madrid where our countries appeared as two of the main pillars of stability and peace in the eastern and southeastern wing of the Atlantic Alliance,”  underlined Mitsotakis.

He said that the Greek and Romanian peoples are also standing side by side against the threats created by the climate crisis,  referring to the assistance of Romanian firefighters that began in the summer of 2021, which at that time was only a plan and had now become an organized cooperation within the context of a broader European project.

“We also agreed to upgrade our collaboration in energy,” said Mitsotakis, stating that Greece has a key role as gateway and as natural gas transfer hub, obviously covering its domestic needs but also supplying the wider region and, of course, Romania.

He underlined that this “is not only a commercial choice but also an act of responsibility, of solidarity with broader effect, which marks a more medium- and long- term cooperation between our countries in the energy sector”.

Mitsotakis also referred to Friday’s inauguration of the IGB natural gas pipeline and its importance in his statements after the meeting. He underlined that they had worked hard to meet the deadlines so that the project would be ready in the middle of the year, recognizing “the role of this infrastructure as Europe rapidly ended its reliance on Russian gas, which is unfortunately geostrategically instumentalising its energy sources”.

Mitsotakis said that they had also discussed developments in the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the return of blatant revisionism in Europe, “at all times seeking ways to support Ukraine and, of course, among them the possibility for alternative export and transfer routes for the huge Romanian agricultural production to international markets”.

Supporting Romania’s accession to Schengen zone

Mr. Mitsotakis pointed out that there was a convergence of views and a common goal and reiterated that Greece unreservedly supports the efforts of Romania and Bulgaria to join the Schengen zone.The Greek premier underlined that he had reiterated Greece’s unconditional support for the Western Balkans’ European perspective.

Concluding, he said that he had briefed his Romanian counterpart on Turkey’s constant provocativeness, intense rhetoric and Ankara’s aggressive actions that question international treaties and Greek sovereign rights.

Romanian PM Ciucă: You can count on us at any difficult time

Reply to Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis following their meeting in Athens on Thursday, Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca stated that “Romania has always been there to support Greece and in 2021 we were literally here to support the Greek government’s efforts, to support the Greek people with these tremendous wildfires. This year we came again to help and we will be here with much more help and support, not only with 28 firefighters and eight fire engines that are here already but also with more if needed.  You can count on us at any difficult time, you can count on our help because we are certain that you would do the same.” Ciucă said.

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