Athens keeps low profile in face of Erdogan rhetoric

27 November 2016
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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s calls for a review, albeit a partial one, of the Lausanne Treaty of 1923 which set the borders of Greece and Turkey, his use of nationalistic rhetoric and Turkey’s military buildup has raised concerns in Athens.

However, the government is reportedly keen on keeping a low profile as it seeks to ensure that the European Union’s deal with Ankara to stem the flow of migrant remains intact and strives to make progress on the United nations-backed Cyprus talks which broke down last week.

Diplomatic sources say that while Athens is not panicking it remains vigilant as Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras prepares to meet with Erdogan to discuss Cyprus, either on December 4 in Dubai or at a later date at another venue. Athens’s low-key stance can also be explained by Greece’s increasing difficulty in dealing with the refugee crisis, which could spiral out of control if Erdogan goes through with his threat to scrap the deal with the EU.

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