Bulgaria asks Greece to open more border checkpoints

Visiting Athens on July 27, Bulgarian Foreign Minister Ekaterina Zaharieva raised the issue of the faster re-opening of as many border checkpoints on the Bulgarian-Greek frontier as possible, against the background of tourist traffic being admitted only through the Kulata-Promachonas checkpoint.

Zaharieva discussed the checkpoint issue at meetings with her Greek counterpart Nikos Dendias and Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

The visit to Greece was Zaharieva’s first since in-person diplomatic meetings were resumed, and was on the occasion of the 140th anniversary of the establishment of Bulgarian-Greek diplomatic relations, Bulgaria’s Foreign Ministry said.

“We also talked about how to facilitate the movement between the two countries in the conditions of the coronavirus. I thank Prime Minister Mitsotakis for his commitment to discuss with the Greek team of experts and to restore the passage through at least one more border checkpoint,” Zaharieva said after the talks with Mitsotakis and Dendias.

She said that it is not possible for only one border crossing point at the moment to serve the entire flow of passengers to Greece across the Greek-Bulgarian border, and this was making it very difficult for people.

The Bulgarian Foreign Ministry statement quoted Dendias as saying: “I can assure you that the Prime Minister has personally committed himself to addressing the issue and will soon have a result, because he realized that this is important not only for the two peoples, but also for communications in the European Union.

“The pandemic has put us in a very difficult position on many levels. Scientists have a heavy responsibility, and we are moving within them.”

The statement said that Dendias congratulated on “how well” it was doing with the coronavirus.

“We all have problems, but overall the countries are doing very well, “Dandyas said.

Zaharieva assured that Bulgaria is a safe and secure destination for Greek tourists and invited them to visit Bulgaria.

During the meeting with Dendias, Zaharieva also touched on the topic of the faster construction of the Rudozem-Xanthi border checkpoint on the Greek side. This would not only improve traffic, but would also contribute to the economic development of the regions on the Bulgarian and Greek sides, the Bulgarian Foreign Ministry statement said.

(Photo: Bulgaria’s Interior Ministry press centre)

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The Sofia Globe staff

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