Greek PM Mitsotakis to meet Erdoğan in Istanbul amid concerns about Russia-Ukraine war

Amid growing concerns about Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis will meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in Istanbul on March 13.

Mitsotakis (L) and Erdoğan are seen shaking hands during a meeting.


Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will meet in Istanbul on March 13, the Greek government spokesman said on March 8. 

Greece and Turkey, NATO allies, disagree on a range of issues from airspace to maritime zones in the eastern Mediterranean, migration and ethnically split Cyprus.

The two leaders are expected to discuss, apart from bilateral issues, Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

"In these difficult circumstances globally, the two countries despite our differences, are faced with common challenges on a range of issues," government spokesman Yannis Oikonomou told reporters. "These challenges need to be dealt with in a logic of solving problems and not of adding new ones."

He added that "Russia's invasion of Ukraine has changed the reality regarding security in Europe but has also highlighted the international community's conviction of any form of expansionism and revisionism".

After a five year hiatus, Greece and Turkey agreed last year to resume exploratory talks to address their differences in the Mediterranean but little progress has been made so far.

Oikonomou said that Mitsotakis would attend the meeting with Erdoğan in a "positive mood", adding that Greece's positions on bilateral issues remain unchanged.