“This year will be a year when we will solve foreign policy issues that have been stalled for decades and for which the nation’s interests require us to find good and productive solutions,” Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias said on Thursday, following the conclusion of a “mini-cabinet” meeting held at the Maximos Mansion. The meeting, where discussion also focused on the FYROM name issue, was chaired by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and held with the participation of Defence Minister and junior coalition partner Panos Kammenos, government vice-president Yiannis Dragasakis, government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos and state ministers Alekos Flambouraris and Christoforos Vernardakis.
“We talked,” said Kotzias, about Balkan issues. “On how we will further develop our cooperation with the other Balkan countries and how we will all contribute to the greater prosperity and productive reorganisation of many areas within the Balkans,” he said, adding that they particularly discussed issues relating to neighbouring Albania and FYROM.
Regarding Albania, Kotzias reported a discussion on “the issues that have been included in the package of solutions with the neighbour country and I think we have taken good and positive steps in the last few weeks.”
On the FYROM name issue, Kotzias said the government continues to support and negotiate for a single compound name for all uses, which Greece had also proposed at Bucharest. He added that the government was in favour of consulting with all the parties and political forces in the country on this issue, as well as every citizen seeking a solution to the problems of the country.
Asked if he was optimistic and if there was a good atmosphere, he replied: “I am always optimistic”.