Call For Peace From Turkey to Greece-12 February 1998
Turkey, through a Verbal Note presented to the Greek Government, called for the settlement of all the Aegean problems by peaceful means and proposed to convene a high level meeting between the two Foreign Ministries before the end of March, 1998.
The UN Secretary General, the Secretary General of NATO and the NATO members were informed about this initiative. Thus, Turkey's proposals of peaceful resolution of disputes were brought to the attention of the international public opinion. In the Note, it was stated that "...Due to the existence of a set of unresolved questions over the Aegean, the two countries are facing tensions in their relations... This situation, unintentionally, could escalate into a serious confrontation..."
While presenting the Note to the Greek Ambassador in Ankara, H.E. Mr. Ismail Cem, Foreign Minister of Turkey, said the following:
"We tell Greece: 'Let's talk, conciliate and make peace'. The response of Greece to this initiative will display and prove the good will of the both countries in the eyes of the international community. I hope, Greece will also display that she is as peaceful and conciliatory as Turkey."
Cem said that this initiative comprised three approaches of resolution originated from the USA, NATO and the EU. He said:
"We are bringing the situation to the attention of the world public opinion and to all countries concerned."
The proposal of Turkey contains the following:
1."Jointly identifying the Aegean problems between the two countries."
2.Formalizing the "Madrid Declaration" of 8 July, 1997, which was agreed upon by Turkey and Greece with the initiative of the US Secretary of State, Mrs. Allbright.
3.Developing and mutually implementing the "Confidence Building Measures in the Aegean" with the collaboration of the NATO Secretary General.
4.Jointly initiating the Personalities Group process, composed of respected Turkish and Greek personalities assigned to come up with proposals concerning the resolution of bilateral problems between the two countries.
5.Upon the positive reply from the Greek Government to the Turkish initiative, convening a high level meeting between the two Foreign Ministries to discuss these proposals, before the end of March 1998, either in Ankara or in Athens.