Minister Joly concludes successful visit to Cyprus, Lebanon, Türkiye and Greece

Minister Joly concludes successful visit to Cyprus, Lebanon, Türkiye and Greece

May 19, 2024 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today successfully concluded her visit to Cyprus, Lebanon, Türkiye and Greece, which took place from May 13 to 17, 2024.

Her visit focused on strengthening bilateral relations, exchanging views on critical global and regional issues and gaining insights into developments in the region.

In Cyprus, Minister Joly met with Constantinos Kombos, Minister of Foreign Affairs. She commended Cyprus for garnering international support to open the maritime corridor that provides humanitarian assistance to Gaza and highlighted Canada’s contribution of $1 million in development assistance funding to supporting the corridor’s operation and to accelerating direct humanitarian assistance throughout Gaza. During her visit, Minister Joly also met with Colin Stewart, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative and Head of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus, to highlight the 60th anniversary of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus. She expressed Canada’s commitment to advancing political dialogue to support the reunification of Cyprus.

In Lebanon, Minister Joly met with Nabih Berri, Speaker of the Parliament, and Najib Mikati, caretaker prime minister, to reiterate Canada’s steadfast support for the Lebanese people, as well as the urgent need to form a government to address Lebanon’s challenges. Minister Joly also discussed the crisis in the Middle East and concerns over the increased violence between Hezbollah and Israel along the Blue Line. While in Lebanon, Minister Joly also met with senior officials, including General Joseph Aoun, Commander of the Lebanese Armed Forces, and reiterated Canada’s commitment to enhancing stability and security in Lebanon. Moreover, she met with Hervé Lecoq, Deputy Head of Mission for the UN Interim Force in Lebanon, to underscore Canada’s support for the full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701 to put an end to hostilities in the south of the country.

In Türkiye, Minister Joly met with Cevdet Yılmaz, Vice President, Hakan Fidan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Akif Çağatay Kılıç, Chief Adviser to the President on National Security and Foreign Policy. Minister Joly highlighted Canada’s commitment to a strong bilateral relationship and enhanced cooperation. She also met with government officials to exchange views on long-term peace and regional stability, including in the Middle East, Ukraine and in the South Caucasus.

In Greece, Minister Joly met with Giorgos Gerapetritis, Minister of Foreign Affairs, to deepen the ties that have existed between the 2 countries for more than 80 years. The ministers agreed to build on the recent successful visit of Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Greece’s Prime Minister, to Canada and on the joint leaders’ statement to advance cooperation in shared areas such as trade and investment, climate action and tourism. Minister Joly also met with Nikos Dendias, Greece’s Minister of National Defence, to discuss regional and global security.

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