Greece is worried as Egypt and Türkiye continue to enhance bilateral relations, with the leaders of the two countries engaging in a brief yet warm exchange earlier in the week while Athens' relations with Ankara remain frosty, local media reported on Tuesday.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan shook hands and chatted with his Egyptian counterpart Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi as the two met in the Qatari capital Sunday on the sidelines of the opening of the World Cup.
Türkiye aims to move a normalization process with Egypt that started with ministers to a higher level with high-level talks, Erdoğan said Monday.
"The relationship between Türkiye and Egypt is not a meeting of leaders, the past relations of the Turkish nation and the Egyptian people are very important to us. Why not again, why not start again? We gave a signal. Hopefully, after nothing extraordinary happens, we will take this step for the best," he added.
He emphasized that Türkiye expects Egypt to establish peace together against those who take a stand against them in the Mediterranean.
While concerned, Athens continues working to boost "already close bilateral relations" with Cairo, the Greek daily newspaper reported on Tuesday after the meeting, described as a "fresh beginning" in Türkiye-Egypt ties.
The daily also underscored Türkiye's role in securing and extending the landmark Black Sea grain deal, which cleared the way for Ukrainian food exports, as a factor in the rapprochement between Ankara and Cairo.
Imported grain plays a profound role not only in the nutrition of the population but also in the political stability of the country, it added.
Claiming that while Egypt and Türkiye remain at odds over Ankara's role in Libya, the daily said that the two sides were still seeking ways to improve bilateral cooperation.
Egypt and Türkiye have not deployed ambassadors since 2013 when relations worsened following the ousting of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi by military chief el-Sissi, now the country’s president. Türkiye-Egypt ties have continued at the level of charge d'affairs since 2013. During this period, brief meetings were held between the foreign ministers of the two countries on various occasions. Meanwhile, the Turkish Embassy in Cairo and Consulate in Alexandria, as well as the Egyptian Embassy in Ankara and Consulate in Istanbul, have continued their usual activities.
The normalization process between Türkiye and Egypt continues at a gradual pace. The two countries started consultations between senior Foreign Ministry officials last year amid a push by Türkiye to ease tensions with regional powers including Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Israel and Saudi Arabia. Erdoğan said in July there was no reason high-level talks should not take place.