Peloni: Athens Supports Nicosia in Its Efforts for a Solution to the Cyprus Problem

ATHENS — "Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is in Nicosia where he is currently meeting with the President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades," alternate government spokesperson Aristotelia Peloni said during a press briefing on Monday. The main focus of their discussion will be the coordination of the Greek and Cypriot governments at an important time for the Cyprus issue, in view of the informal five-party conference that is to be convened by the Secretary General of the United Nations, she said.

"It is emphasised that Greece remains committed to the solution of a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation based on the relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council, the convergences of the two sides and the acquis communautaire," Peloni stressed.

She expressed Greece's support for the already established progress in the UN negotiations, noting that it was the result of many years of negotiations efforts and must be preserved. She also expressed Greece's support for the Republic of Cyprus "in its efforts to find a solution to the Cyprus problem, as well as the efforts of the UN Secretary General for the resumption of negotiations."

After visiting Nicosia, the prime minister will also visit Israel, she announced.

"The prime minister will go to Jerusalem, where, at 16:45, he will have a meeting with his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu. The object of their meeting is the review of developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, the expansion of bilateral cooperation and the reaffirmation of Greek-Israeli cooperation in the defence sector. After all, bilateral defense cooperation has already been significantly upgraded in the last year and a half and its results are being launched," Peloni said .

"The strategic cooperation with Israel – as the prime minister has repeatedly emphasised – is strong, solid. It is independent of and does not turn against third countries. It is also very important for the two countries to expand cooperation in the field of tourism, which will be a special topic of discussion. 'Israel', as Kyriakos Mitsotakis has said, 'is a very important market for Greece and if 70 pct of its population has been vaccinated by the end of March, it will be easier to gradually start opening up to Israelis interested in travelling to our country,'" she said.

She also said that the prime minister will be accompanied by Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and Tourism Minister Haris Theoharis, who will have meetings with their Israeli counterparts.

Regarding the progress of vaccination efforts, Peloni pointed out that "vaccination in the country is progressing smoothly and according to the original plan. About 400,000 vaccinations have been carried out so far. There will be some variation in the Astra Zeneca vaccine. Following a decision by the National Vaccination Committee, this vaccine will be used – as in other European Union countries – for the ages between 18 and 64 years old."

According to a decision of the National Vaccination Committee, the reason why vaccination is currently limited to people aged 18 to 64 years is that there is still insufficient data from clinical trials regarding its efficacy for people aged 65 and over. These data are expected in the coming days.

The vaccinations with the new vaccine are expected to start around mid-February.



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