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Cyprus, Greece And Israel To Expand Energy And Climate Change Cooperation

Cyprus, Greece And Israel To Expand Energy And Climate Change Cooperation

Cooperation on energy, climate change, the blue economy and natural disaster management, through an approach of "regional multilateralism" in the Eastern Mediterranean, as part of a positive agenda, were discussed on Monday, May 9, during a teleconference meeting among the Foreign Ministers of the United States, the Republic of Cyprus, Greece and Israel.

Anthony Blinken, Ioannis Kasoulides, Nikos Dendias and Yair Lapid agreed on maintaining the political dynamics of the 3+1 format, as well as establishing a political dialogue between the countries, on various issues and policy sectors, according to a press release issued by the Cyprus Ministry of Foreign Affairs following the meeting's conclusion.

They also agreed that a meeting will be held with physical presence in autumn, for the purpose of evaluating the progress achieved in the individual areas of cooperation.

The four ministers issued a joint statement after the meeting, reaffirming their shared commitment to promoting peace, stability, and prosperity in the Eastern Mediterranean.

"In a critical period for Europe, the United States, and the world, the Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to the 3+1 format and decided to intensify their cooperation in the areas of energy, economy, climate action, emergency preparedness, and counter-terrorism, contributing to resilience, energy security, and interconnectivity in the region", the statement reads.

According to the joint statement, the 3+1 support additional initiatives such as the Negev Summit that promote cooperation in the region and they condemned the recent "horrific terror attacks against Israelis, including the May 5 terror attack in Elad".

Moreover, the Ministers decided to develop a roadmap with tangible deliverables for the coming year and to set the stage for a follow-on meeting before the end of 2022.

According to the Cyprus Ministry of Affairs, in his speech, Kasoulides highlighted the need to maintain political momentum in the 3+1 format through cooperation programs in various sectors. He stressed that in this network of synergies no country is excluded, if there is respect for international law and its individual aspects, as well as the law of the sea. He informed about the intention of Cyprus to host a ministerial meeting on issues of blue economy. As for dealing with natural disasters, he proposed the creation of a regional multinational hub to deal with fires.

In his statements, in Athens, after the conclusion of the teleconference with his counterparts, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias stressed that the strengthening of cooperation in the framework of the 3+1 format is of essential importance. "I had the opportunity to underline that after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the strengthening of our cooperation, including the framework of the 3+1 format, is absolutely necessary," Dendias said.

During the teleconference, the Greek Foreign Minister highlighted "the importance that Greece attaches to the issues of interconnectivity and energy security".

In this context, he referred to the significance of the new floating LNG terminal in Alexandroupolis, the construction of which was inaugurated a few days ago by the Greek Prime Minister.

Moreover, Dendias underlined the importance of the energy and electricity interconnection between Greece, Cyprus and Israel, through the EastMed pipeline and the EuroAsia Interconnector. "These projects, as it is well known, follow the same geographical route," he pointed out.

"We agreed on a new meeting either in Washington, Greece or Cyprus, with physical presence, before the end of 2022," the Greek Foreign Minister said.

As he mentioned, the main objective of the upcoming meeting, as well as of today's teleconference, is to further deepen multilateral cooperation and "to spread the message that Greece, together with Cyprus, Israel and the United States, are pillars of peace, security and stability in the region."

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