Nikos Dendias: Turkey Running a “Jihadist Travel Agency” with Syrian Mercenaries – Al Marsad

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi met on Tuesday in Amman with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides in a fourth meeting of its kind to further a tripartite cooperation mechanism in vital sectors including increased collaboration on regional issues aimed at securing peace, stability and economic growth.

(Libya, 9 December 2020) – In preparation of the upcoming summit scheduled next year in Greece, the foreign ministers of Jordan, Greece and Cyprus reviewed steps taken by the three countries to implement the decisions made at the summits held by the leaders in Nicosia in 2018 and in Amman in 2019.

In a joint press statement following the meeting, Safadi reaffirmed the importance of the meeting, saying that due to the geographical and cultural proximity between the countries, coordination concerned with regional developments serves as a common interest and a necessity.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi in Amman with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias and Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides.


“We support the political efforts that aim to preserve Libya from falling into a serious crisis”, said the Jordanian Foreign Minister at the press conference. He added, “we want a stable and secure Libya, with no external interference in its affairs and there is no terrorism in it, to ensure the security of Libya and the region.”

Safadi said: “For us, the security of our sister, Egypt, is part of our security, therefore we want to ensure that Libya is not an arena for further conflict that threatens Libya’s neighbourhood.”

The Jordanian Foreign Minister underlined the need to devote efforts to end the Libyan crisis, as “Libya’s security is part of our security”, adding that “the region does not need additional conflicts” and that dialogue must be employed to end tensions on the basis of international law.”

He emphasised that terrorism was a common enemy that bears no affiliation with Islam and the values of peace, tolerance and mutual love and respect for the other, the foreign minister said, warning against falling for terrorist’s trap of portraying the war on terrorism as that between the Islamic world and the West. “An Islamic terrorism does not exist”, Safadi said, adding that His Majesty King Abdullah II calls them khawarij (outlaws of Islam).

The Greek foreign minister said that the trilateral cooperation between Greece, Jordan and Cyprus “does not target others”, but is rather open to everyone enjoying the willingness to achieve peace and stability, adding that it is “an honour” for Greece to host the 2021 summit.


Dendias praised Jordan “for being a beacon of peace and stability in this turbulent region”. He added, “We know you are facing huge challenges all over, and it is not just the pandemic. For example, you are having a record number of refugees on your soil. And yet you host them, you treat them in a humane way and you don’t use their presence as a way of blackmailing the European Union or other countries.”


Dendias criticised Turkey’s aggressive foreign policy in the Mediterranean region. He said: Turkey acts in exactly the opposite way, outside the bounds of international legality, and having become, unfortunately the local troublemaker.”

“Threatening to use force—it has threatened to declare war against Greece, if Greece really acts on what is its sovereign right, expanding its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles.”

He condemned Turkey’s exploitation of the refugee crisis and using Syrian mercenaries as an auxiliary army against countries, like a “jihadi travel agency”: “By instrumentalising the migration issue, by spreading propaganda and fake news, by exacerbating security challenges, by moving jihadists from Libya to the Caucasus—what I call a “jihadist travel agency”—and endangering peace and stability in all the region.”

He added: “This is totally unacceptable and we have repeatedly called upon Ankara to involve itself in a constructive dialogue with all countries that are law-abiding and share the values that we share. I have to say that it is hugely important that we work together, it is hugely important that we enhance our common understanding. It is absolutely necessary in order to create a better future for our broader region. Insecurity and instability are not needed.”

© AlMarsad English (2020)