20:59 GMT18 January 2021
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    Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said that Cyprus and Greece must work together to develop a "bridge of peace and cooperation between Europe and Russia".

    MOSCOW, February 2 (Sputnik) – Greece and Cyprus could mediate a dialogue between the European Union and Russia, the newly-elected Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said Monday.

    During his official visit to Cyprus, Tsipras said that the two countries must work together to develop "a bridge of peace and cooperation between Europe and Russia," the Cyprus Financial Mirror newspaper reported.

    The prime minister said that Athens does not consider loans from Russia to be a possibility.

    "We are in substantial negotiations with our partners in Europe and our lenders. We have obligations towards them," Tsipras was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

    Relations between Moscow and Brussels significantly deteriorated following Crimea's reunification with Russia in March 2014. The EU, the United States as well as a number of other countries imposed several rounds of economic sanctions against Russia, accusing it of interfering in Ukraine's internal affairs.

    On Sunday, European Parliament President Martin Schulz expressed concern over the new Greek government's pro-Russian stance. Members of the left-wing Syriza party, having recently won parliamentary elections, have repeatedly criticized the West's sanctions against Russia, saying that they damage the Greek economy also, particularly agriculture.


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