Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias today convened the inter-party National Council on Foreign Policy, in order to discuss the government’s plans to create a Greek National Security Council.
The Council convenes rarely, and it is usually to discuss developments in ongoing pressing foreign policy issues that are of national importance.
The move comes amidst a series of serious foreign policy challenges, including the ratification by the Greek parliament of the Greece-FYROM naming accord, Turkey’s hostile posture in the Aegean and in the Exclusive Economic Zone of the Republic of Cyprus, and UN efforts to jump-start the stalled Cyprus settlement talks.
The idea of creating a National Security Council has been proposed at various times in the past, but it came to the forefront again recently during the crisis involving the five-month imprisonment in a Turkish jail of two Greek Army officers, who were finally set free on 15 August.
The National Council on Foreign Policy is chaired by the foreign minister and is comprised of the shadow foreign ministers of opposition parties.
The Greek Communist Party (KKE) has a policy of not attending the Council’s meetings, and the extreme right Golden Dawn party has not been invited to attend since it entered parliament.