Greece recognizes the so-called Kosovo? They reacted
Albin Kurti said Greece is close to recognizing Kosovo's independence, i.e., it is close to changing that decision among the EU members who do not recognize it.Source: Kosovo online
Officials from Athens deny this and say that the country's position on this issue remains the same, reports Euractiv.
When asked by Euractiv about Kurti's statement, a Greek government source was categorical:
"Greece's position remains unchanged".
Greece, Slovakia, Romania, Spain and Cyprus do not recognize the independence of Kosovo, which was unilaterally declared in 2008. Speaking on Polish television on Sunday, Kurti said that Pristina "worked hard in the diplomatic aspect to join Kosovo to most EU countries".
"Greece is at the head of these countries, which is close to recognizing the independence of Kosovo. This is also shown by the status of our office in Athens".
Euractiv reminds that Greece has a Liaison Office accredited by UNMIC in Pristina, while Kosovo opened an Office for Economic and Commercial Affairs in Athens.
Athens also recognizes passports issued by Kosovo. For a long time, Greece has been seen as the "weakest link" among the five member states that do not recognize Kosovo. In March of this year, Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikos Dendias visited Kosovo for the sixth time, he met with President Vjosa Osmani.
In a statement after the meeting, Osmani praised Greece's commitment and constant support for visa liberalization and Euro-Atlantic integration in Kosovo.
"The meeting also discussed the relations between Kosovo and Greece, where President Osmani showed his willingness to strengthen further bilateral relations," the statement of the Kosovo Presidency stated at the time.
But a few days later, during a visit to Serbia, Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou said that nothing will change when it comes to Athens' position regarding Kosovo's independence.
That confirmation came again at the end of August from Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who met with Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić in Athens. After that meeting, Vučić said that there will be no change in Greece's official position regarding the non-recognition of Kosovo.