Greece to issue visas for Turkish island visitors

Greece is set to simplify the process for Turkish citizens visiting select Aegean islands by issuing temporary visas.

Publication: 07.12.2023 - 13:36
Greece to issue visas for Turkish island visitors
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The European Commission has endorsed Athens' decision, indicating a collaborative effort with the EU. "This isn’t about an agreement with Turkey. It's our independent decision, in line with European Commission guidelines, as part of the Schengen area," Greece’s Migration Minister Dimitris Kairidis stated in a recent ERT TV interview.

Greece seeks to strengthen ties with Turkey

The reintroduction of this visa is expected to bolster tourism in the Greek islands and enhance economic ties between Greece and Turkey. It also suggests a thawing of relations following the near-conflict tensions of 2020.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Erdogan have shown a warming relationship since their July meeting, agreeing to maintain peace despite disagreements over critical issues like maritime border delineation. Their decision to resume the High-Level Cooperation Council, inactive since 2016, marks a significant step in this direction. This council, initiated in 2010, facilitates ministerial discussions on various bilateral issues.

Additionally, Greece and Turkey have agreed to exchange coastguard officials in Izmir and Lesvos to better manage migration flows, Kairidis added. This move further exemplifies the growing cooperation between the neighboring countries.

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