Greece agrees to talks with Libya over maritime zone after fury over Turkey agreement

Greece agrees to talks with Libya over maritime zone after fury over Turkey agreement
2 min read
14 April, 2021
Greece and Libya have agreed to enter talks to mark out their maritime zones in the Mediterranean after Tripoli reiterated an agreement with Turkey, angering Athens.
Greece and Libya will enter talks on maritime borders [Getty]
Greece and Libya will hold talks on marking out their maritime zones in the Mediterranean, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Wednesday.

Mitsotakis met with the president of the Libyan Presidential Council, Mohamed al-Menfi.

Mitsotakis said the two leaders "agreed on the immediate resumption of talks between Greece and Libya on the delimitation of the maritime zones", according to a statement about the meeting.

Mitsotakis said Athens aimed to reset relations with Libya, which were strained after the Tripoli government signed a maritime boundary accord with Turkey - Greece's regional rival - in 2019.

The issue has fed tensions between Greece and Turkey over territorial and energy issues in the eastern Mediterranean that brought them close to war last year.

On Monday, Libya and Turkey maintained their commitment to the 2019 maritime agreement, despite continued protests by Greece and Cyprus.

Cyprus and Greece reject the agreement as a serious breach of international law, which disregarded their own maritime borders. 

Read also: Greek PM calls on Libya to cancel maritime deal with Turkey

At a meeting in Ankara, Libya's new Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan signed an agreement to delineate maritime borders between the two countries in the Mediterranean. 

"The memorandum of understanding concerning the maritime jurisdiction in the Mediterranean that we signed with our neighbour Libya, has secured the interest and future of both countries," said Erdogan at Monday’s meeting. 

Dbeibah, who was on his first official trip to Ankara since taking office, agreed with Erdogan saying it served the national interests of both nations. 

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