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Greece blocked NATO statement on support for Turkey

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Athens on Friday evening vetoed a NATO statement in support of Ankara after the deaths of 30 Turkish troops in Idlib , the Greek newspaper Vima reported.

“Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias gave relevant instructions to the Permanent Mission of Greece in the North Atlantic Alliance when, during the meeting of the North Atlantic Council, a text was agreed at the level of Deputy Permanent Representatives that did not include Greece’s proposal to refer to compliance with the EU-Turkey agreement on refugees and migrants signed in March 2016,” the newspaper writes.

The demand of Athens, according to the newspaper, met strong resistance from a number of countries, including Great Britain, Germany, as well as the USA and France.

Turkey, through the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlut Cavusoglu, demanded to begin the process of political consultations provided for in the Washington Treaty in the event of a threat to one of the NATO member countries.

“The initial meeting of the Permanent Representatives on Friday morning ended without a joint statement, but the situation changed later that day. At the same time, Turkey asked for help in air defense, intelligence and so on, but there seems to be no agreement on these issues allies, at least at this stage,” the newspaper writes.

Greece is worried about the situation on the borders with Turkey after Ankara said that it can no longer restrain the flow of refugees from Syria to Europe. Athens maximally strengthened the protection of sea and land borders with Turkey.

The heads of state and government of the EU member states in mid-March 2016 agreed with Turkey a joint plan to combat the migration crisis. It provides, in particular, the allocation of money to Ankara for the reception of refugees, the return to Turkey of all illegal immigrants who arrived in Greece from Turkish territory, and the reception by the EU of legal Syrian migrants on a one-by-one basis.

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