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Statement of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nikos Kotzias, following a meeting under Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras (Athens, 4.1.2018)
N. KOTZIAS: Good day and Happy New Year. I think this will be the year we will resolve foreign policy issues that have been stagnating for decades now. It is vital to our national interests that we find productive solutions to these issues.
We talked about the Balkan issues, on ways to further develop our cooperation with the other Balkan countries and contribute, all together, to the greater prosperity and productive reconstruction of many regions of the Balkans.
More specifically, we talked about issues related to Albania and FYROM. With regard to Albania, we discussed issues that have been included in the package of solutions with our neighbouring country and I think we have taken good and positive steps in the recent weeks.
With regard to FYROM, the discussion was more focused on the name issue. On the name issue, the Government –as it has repeatedly underscored– supports and is negotiating for a compound name that is the same for all uses, which is also the position Greece put forward in Bucharest. We are in favour of conferring with all of the country’s parties and political forces, with every person and every citizen who is interested and looks for solutions to the issues the country is addressing, so that we can create a better future; a future in which problems of the past do not dominate the country's politics.
JOURNALIST: Are you optimistic? Is there a good climate?
N. KOTZIAS: I am always optimistic.