Greece doesn’t forget its disagreements with Turkey “but that does not mean we must constantly live with our finger on the trigger,”  Greek PM Mitsotakis said on Saturday, during a campaign tour that brought him to the western Greece city of Agrinio.

Greek political leaders are travelling across the country at present ahead of the June 9 European Parliament election.

In an interview with “Ta Nea – Weekend” en route to the area, Kyriakos Mitsotakis also commented on the recent “black-sliding” in neighboring North Macedonia, where the recently elected president and the prime minister-designate flatly refused to use the constitutional name – as mandated by the 2018 Prespa Agreement – and instead fell back on the nationalist and ahistorical “Macedonia”, stand-alone.

PM Mitsotakis once again reiterated that “when someone pulls on the line, they should be ready for it to break. And if they deviate from the agreed path, they should know that the road to Europe will close,” a reference to the neighboring country’s EU accession course and the fact that the latter requires Greece acquiescence.

Regarding recently jump-started ties with official Turkey, Mitsotakis said the countries are on a path of communication and that results of bilateral policies are reflected in a reduction of illegal migrant flows, among others. He also pointed to the significant benefits for several eastern Aegean islands from an easy-visa scheme implemented this year for Turkish citizens. Finally, he emphasized the need for peace between Greece and Turkey given the intense conflict right next door in the Middle East.

Turning to the domestic front, Mitsotakis charged that a portion of Greece’s political opposition is fostering populist and toxic ideologies. “My only opponents are the nation’s problems…the political opposition was emphatically rejected by the Greek people in the 2023 national elections.