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Greece ready to discuss maritime borders with Turkey31 July 2020

Government spokesman stresses importance of talks with Turkey

Greece is seeking to hold talks on delimitation of maritime boundaries with Turkey, an official said Thursday.

At a weekly news conference in Athens, government spokesman Stelios Petsas stressed the importance of open communication channels with Turkey, especially when tensions escalated, referring to the Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean.

He went on to say Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis held a phone talk with Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiadis over the arrival of Turkish seismic vessel -- Barbaros Hayrettin Pasa to the Turkish Cypriot side of the island.

Turkey is a guarantor nation for the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and has consistently contested the Greek Cypriot administration's unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting that the TRNC also has rights to the resources in the area.

In 1974, following a coup aimed at the annexation of Cyprus by Greece, Ankara had to intervene as a guarantor power. In 1983, the TRNC was founded.

The decades since have seen several attempts to resolve the Cyprus dispute, all ending in failure. The latest, held with the participation of the guarantor countries -- Turkey, Greece and the UK -- came to an end without any progress in 2017 in Switzerland.

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