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The Minister of Defence met with Israel’s Ambassador
09/04/2013



The Minister of Defence, Mr Fotis Fotiou, met yesterday at this office with the Ambassador of Israel, Mr Michael Harari. In his statements after the meeting Mr Fotiou said that he had the opportunity to meet for the first time in his capacity as Minister of Defence with the Ambassador of Israel.

“We asserted the friendly and constructive relations between Cyprus and Israel, we exchanged views on different matters of common interest, while we also discussed Defence related matters between Cyprus and Israel and ways to further develop this cooperation,” said the Minister of Defence.

Further he said that he briefed the Ambassador on the latest developments regarding the Cyprus problem as well as on the developments regarding the Exclusive Economic Zone. “At this point,” he added, “we had the chance to exchange views with regard to another serious matter, that of energy security, which is of course a matter that must be examined bilaterally and regionally.” The Minister also said that this strategy isn’t a threat against any neighboring country, but it must be considered as an opportunity to work on a joint program for energy security in the region.

“Our cooperation is based on the principle of good neighborhood focusing on international law with the purpose of safeguarding peace, stability and growth in our region, and this cooperation is not targeted against anyone. Our discussion could not exclude the situation in the Middle East and especially the developments in our neighbor, Syria,” he added.

The Minister of Defence said also that at the meeting the positive spirit of cooperation was reasserted and he added: “We are certain that the relations between our countries will continue to strengthen and develop in all areas.”

On his part the Ambassador of Israel expressed his content for the meeting with Mr Fotiou and said that they had the chance to discuss their countries’ bilateral relations, which, he said are developing very well. He added that the purpose is to strengthen the bilateral relations in favor of the two countries and their peoples. There are many issues for discussion and development, and the upcoming visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Energy were expected later that evening as well as that of President, Mr Anastasiades and the Minister of Defence in the following days.

Israel and Cyprus are determined to strengthen and deepen their relations in all areas in the favor of their peoples and the region, said finally the Ambassador.

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