Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos (L, front) and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (R, front) view guards of honor during a welcome ceremony at the presidential mansion in Athens, Greece, on Jan. 29, 2018. Greek leaders and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin who started a three-day visit to Greece on Monday, called for steps to promote peace and security in the wider region. (Xinhua/Marios Lolos)
by Maria Spiliopoulou
ATHENS, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- Greek leaders and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin who started a three-day visit to Greece on Monday, called for steps to promote peace and security in the wider region.
"We seek to restore peace in the Middle East and combat the terrorist barbarity of ISIS which commits crimes against humanity. We seek and support a fair and sustainable solution to the Palestinian issue, which will ensure peace and security for both peoples," Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos said receiving Rivlin at the presidential mansion in Athens.
"The entire world, all countries, should realize that we should say enough with wars. We have already been through two World Wars. Enough with conflicts. We must find a solution for security. We must find a solution based on respect and security," the Israeli leader said on his part during their meeting which was broadcast on Greek national broadcaster ERT.
Both sides reiterated their commitment to strengthening bilateral and regional cooperation in many fields, from the economy and energy to security, despite diverging views on some issues.
The Greek president stressed that Greece is aligned with the EU position on the Jerusalem issue and with the implementation of the rules of international law, according to an e-mailed press statement released by the Greek presidency.
During their meeting, both leaders also sent a strong message against the revival of fascism and Nazism and the construction of a Holocaust museum in the city of Thessaloniki in northern Greece.
On Tuesday, Rivlin and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will attend a ceremony during which the foundation stone for the museum will be laid.
During their meeting at the Greek prime minister's office on Monday, Tsipras noted that it was homage to the Greek Jewish community which suffered greatly during WWII.
Regarding the present, the Greek prime minister stressed that the region is facing great challenges.
"We have to take bold steps to promote peace and stability," he stressed.