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New Greek PM Mitsotakis to visit Cyprus on first official overseas engagement


New Greek PM Mitsotakis to visit Cyprus on first official overseas engagement

mitsotakis cyprus
Photo: Ekathimerini

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will visit Cyprus today to meet President Nicos Anastasiades.

On July 7 New Democracy’s Mr Mitsotakis was elected premier, ousting the Syriza government of Alexis Tsipras. Today’s visit to Cyprus will give the new leader of Greece an opportunity to outline his policy toward the island nation.

PM Mitosakis stands firmly behind reunification of the island. In recent comments remembering the forty-fifth anniversary of the Turkish invasion, Mr Mitosakis pledged to continue the “fight for the reunification of Cyprus”.

Migration may be a potential area to continue this “fight”. Since the 1974 invasion, ethnic politics has played a major role in the divisions within the island seen to this day. Last Tuesday, both governments agreed to a joint initiative on migration that seeks to give ethnic Cypriot Greeks displaced by the invasion new avenues to return to northern Cyprus. The initiative in its present form remains a broad proposal, but future development may see steps taken to create economic and political incentives to accomplish this goal.

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Whether or not this policy will be successful will depend on how far cooperation will be tied to EU policy and ethnic identity. The success of talks set for the first week of August between Mr Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci will measure to what extent the talks today successfully moved migration cooperation forward.

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