24 April, 2007
The peace process in the Middle East was the main issue discussed at the European Union's General Affairs Council here on Monday. Greece's positions were outlined by Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis.
Bakoyannis said in a statement that during the relevant discussion at the Council, Greece maintained that all efforts must be aimed at supporting the Palestinian government, alleviating its economic ordeal and continuing contacts with certain ministers in this government, particularly the foreign minister and the finance minister.
She added that the Greek side presented the Council with a proposal for the Palestinian foreign minister to be invited to the General Affairs Council for an extensive discussion, as is the case with all the sides involved.
According to Bakoyannis, Greece also maintained that the process of contacts between the "quartet" and the four Arab countries involved in this issue must go ahead and that these consultations must then be continued with the participation of the Palestinians and the Israelis as well.
Also commenting on the course of Cyprus' accession to the eurozone, the foreign minister said that the relevant decision must be taken only on the basis of economic criteria, as is the case for the rest of the candidate countries.
She further said that no exception must be made in the way with which Cyprus will be handled and made the assessment that there will be no political criteria for the accession of Cyprus to the eurozone.
Source: Athens News Agency