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Why did the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece arrange a squabble with Zakharova

Why did the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece arrange a squabble with Zakharova

July 20 2018 LJ cover – Зачем МИД Греции устроил перепалку с Захаровой
Tags: Greece, Politics, Russia, International relations, Analytics

The Greek Foreign Ministry decided not to limit itself to the expulsion of Russian diplomats and continued to fan the scandal by entering into controversy with Maria Zakharova, who was trying to defuse the situation. Athens accused the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry of misunderstanding of the Greek foreign policy and disrespect of the country's sovereignty. What is behind the sharp statements of the Greeks?

Внезапный дипломатический кризис между Грецией и Россией, спровоцированный небывалым демаршем Афин, еще больше усугубился. Посол России в Афинах Андрей Маслов в четверг сообщил, что визит министра иностранных дел России Сергея Лаврова в Грецию, который должен был состояться в сентябре, в нынешней ситуации утрачивает актуальность.

Maslov added that Moscow also decided on the expulsion of Greek diplomats. The timing and number of Greek diplomats, which Moscow will send, are still unknown.

Дипломатический скандал между Грецией и Россией вспыхнул 11 июля, когда через афинскую прессу было объявлено о высылке из страны сразу двух российских дипломатов и запрете на въезд еще двум. Их обвинили во вмешательстве в греческие внутренние дела и в подрыве ее национальной безопасности.

Как писала газета ВЗГЛЯД, необычность этого демарша в том, что ранее ничего подобного в двусторонних отношениях Москвы и Афин не было. Если и возникали трения по каким-либо вопросам и вставал вопрос о высылке дипломатических сотрудников (что тоже бывало крайне редко), то этому придавалось минимум огласки. Тем не менее сами по себе отношения при правительстве Алексиса Ципраса, вопреки ожиданиям, становились всё более прохладными.

Сам же дипломатический скандал, как не исключали эксперты, мог быть связан с переговорами и соглашением Греции и Македонии о смене госнаименования последней, которое было воспринято Москвой без энтузиазма. Греческие СМИ даже поспешили опубликовать обвинения в адрес Лаврова, что он будто бы угрожал греческому коллеге заблокировать в СБ ООН соглашение о новом названии Македонии. Однако накануне официальный представитель МИД России Мария Захарова назвала такие заявления абсурдом и чушью, удивившись, что греческое внешнеполитическое ведомство не опровергло данные слухи.

However, it was much more important for the Greek Foreign Ministry to engage in a squabble with Zakharova than to refute insinuations against the Russian minister. So, the Greeks were outraged that the spokeswoman, trying to smooth out the situation with the expulsion of diplomats, said: "We understand perfectly well that the pressure to which Greece was subjected was the strongest. I can say for sure that I rely on facts ... In this case it was a game in which, of course, Greece was drawn ... The game was multi-stage - we just know it. "

В опубликованном на сайте МИД Греции заявлении слова Захаровой назвали голословным обвинением, «характерным примером неуважения к третьей стране» и свидетельством непонимания «современного мира, в котором государства независимо от их размера имеют самостоятельность и могут проводить независимую, многогранную и демократическую внешнюю политику». Это демонстрация менталитета людей, «которые не понимают принципов и ценностей греческой внешней политики», продолжили греки.

The statement also says that the same "negative logic", like that of Zakharova, prompted four Russian "citizens to take actions that led to their deportation or prohibition of entry to Greece." But the grounds on which Athens operated were "timely submitted to the Russian authorities," and the Russian authorities "know very well what their people are doing." At the same time, the Foreign Ministry added, Greece sought to perceive the actions of these citizens as not having to do with official Russian foreign policy. "However, with his today's statement, the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry agrees with them and shows that she would like to legalize these illegal actions," the Greek ministry decided. They added that "permanent disrespect for Greece should cease" and "no one has the right and can not interfere in its internal affairs".

Senior Researcher of the Black Sea-Mediterranean Studies Department at the Institute of Europe of the Russian Academy of Sciences Denis Zelikson believes that "this is a standard diplomatic practice, when a statement from a Foreign Ministry spokesman is made at a sufficiently high level, as it was in Russia."

However, according to its content, "this statement directly relates not just to Greece, it is the practice of correcting foreign policy," he told VZGLYAD, adding that such statements can not remain unanswered due to elementary diplomatic rules and practices. And the statement of the Greek Foreign Ministry is a formal reaction to the actions of the Russian ministry. There is no complex, a desire to show their independence or somehow express their grievances, the source said.

This situation can not be regarded as anti-Russian, believes Zelikson in this connection. The very logic of the development of events shows that in Greece since the emergence of the situation when they were forced to send Russian diplomats in the person of the official representative of the government, they constantly stressed that this really has a special case. And this should not affect the mutual relations of the two countries.

Zelikson is convinced that the statement of the Greek Foreign Ministry on independence is absolutely in the logic of diplomacy, since it is a reference to the basic norms of international law regarding sovereignty. Of course, the foreign policy of Greece, according to the expert, is influenced by the EU, but this should not be reduced to any impact of the individual state or individuals, since it is only the usual harmonization of the foreign policy of the participants within the framework of the integration association. With the United States, the Greeks have a tense relationship, in his words.

However, with this position, the Greek journalist Nikos Fidiropoulos strongly disagrees. If this were really just a special case, then all possible disagreements could be solved through internal channels, not publicizing and not giving public attention to the matter, Fidiropoulos told VZGLYAD. The exposure of this whole story is in conflict with the traditional relationship between the two countries, he assured.

So it can not be ruled out that by making a scandal in the public arena and continuing to inflate it, Athens wants not so much to demonstrate its independence, but rather a new, not very friendly course towards Moscow.

He is sure that such publicity was caused, inter alia, by the domestic political and economic situation in Greece. There, the so-called Macedonian card is played out as an internal political disassembly between the parties, who dream of getting to power sooner, the interlocutor explained. Fidiropoulos admitted that he was one of those who believed in the desire of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, "who managed to charm Vladimir Putin two years ago," to strengthen relations with Moscow. "Like other millions of Greeks, I saw in Cipras someone who would make every effort to lift the nation from its knees, get rid of the" three "international creditors (IMF, ECB and the European Commission - note VZGLYAD), which already make up the country's budget ". However, instead of this, relations with Russia are deteriorating, Athens is bent under all the demands of creditors and the EU.

По его словам, не нужно много ума, чтобы видеть влияние на Грецию со стороны стран Запада. «Все мы зависим от них, от господина Шойбле (председатель бундестага Вольфганг Шойбле), канцлера ФРГ Ангелы Меркель. То, что немцы не сумели сделать 75 лет назад, они сделали своим экономическим ресурсом. И в этом им помогли отдельно взятые греческие политики-компрадоры», – подытожил Фидиропулос.

"And when they say that Russia almost paid for millions of meetings in Athens and Thessaloniki, I want to ask why Russia needs this? You turn your head to the left, maybe this was supported by the US? Then be filled with the spirit, if you are so glad for the fact that Greece is so independent ... If you said "a", then say "b". The fact that American "comrades" interfere in all this, I have no doubts, "the journalist said, adding that Russia" recognized Skopje as Macedonia twenty years ago, what kind of pressure it could exert. "

Fidiropoulos admitted that, despite Greek citizenship, "forced to associate" with Zakharova's opinion. According to him, the decision to expel Russian diplomats "was independent at 50 percent." "The rest of 50 are obligations to the European Union and Washington," he said.

Собеседник также возмутился тем, что «крайним» во всей этой ситуации обозначен генконсул России в Салониках Алексей Попов, который «столько сил положил на выстраивание отношений между странами еще с советских времен, и его буквально сливают». «Я прекрасно знаю Алексея Анатольевича Попова. Это дипломат, который всю свою жизнь посвятил Греции. И поставить его в ситуацию, что он чего-то там нарушал... Это никак не укладывается в моей голове», – признался Фидиропулос.

Andrei Rezchikov, Yana Belousova
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