While Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis' comments that "we will never ask for financial assistance in Moscow," which notably does not deny acceptance of aid if offered, and Greek Minister of Energy Panagiotis Lafazanis adding that Athens opposes the embargo imposed on Moscow, "we have no disagreement with Russia and the Russian people," it is perhaps not surprising that, as Vedemosti reports, Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke by phone with the new Prime Minister of Greece Alexis Tsipras, congratulated him on taking office, and invited him to Russia.
The situation in Ukraine and other international issues, among them, “the South Stream and Turkish Stream pipeline projects, dominated a telephone call between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras earlier on Thursday, the Kremlin announced.
Putin invited Tsipras to visit Moscow on May 9 when celebrations will take place, commemorating the peoples' victory over fascism. On his part, the Greek prime minister underlined the importance he attributes to the fight against Nazism, expressing his intention to accept the invitation.
The Russian leader's top foreign policy adviser Yuri Ushakov said that Putin congratulated Tsipras on his victory in last month's general elections and on the assumption of his duties as the new prime minister of Greece.
The discussion was very warm and constructive, he said, noting that President Putin invited Tsipras to Russia. He also said that the will for a more active development of bilateral relations was reaffirmed.
The Russian ministers of foreign affairs and defence have already invited their Greek counterparts to visit Moscow.
* * *
Meanwhile, as ekathimerini reports, Obama is worried about the pivot...
The United States has urged Greece to work closely with its European partners and the International Monetary Fund, a senior American official said late on Wednesday.
“We do believe that in the case of Greece it is very important for the Greek government to work cooperatively with its European colleagues, as well as with the IMF. And we have advised it to do so, and we are hopeful that these conversations are now moving to a place with some cooperation and mutual understanding.” noted the official during a conference call regarding US Vice President Joe Biden's visit to Belgium and Germany which begins on Thursday.
The comments followed President Obama’s recent remarks with regard to austerity in Greece, in which he argued that countries could not go on being “squeezed.”
* * *
And Russia reiterates its willingness to aid Greece financially...
- *RUSSIA WOULD CONSIDER AID TO GREECE, NO REQUEST MADE: SILUANOV