Israel, Greece, and Cyprus continued their series of trilateral summits on Tuesday, with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett hosting Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades in Jerusalem.
The three countries have held multiple summits in recent years, but this is the first one with Bennett as prime minister.
Israel, Greece, and Cyprus have close cooperation on natural gas from the Mediterranean Sea, as well as in security matters. The Prime Minister’s Office said the discussions were also set to include tourism, climate change, and the COVID-19 pandemic.
“While destructive forces are trying to become even more destructive, it is important that we, the positive forces, work together to protect our growth, defense, and economies in the Eastern Mediterranean,” Bennett said in a bilateral meeting with Anastasiades.
Bennett said relations between Israel and Cyprus go beyond joint interests, and that the countries also share values.
President Isaac Herzog stressed the importance of the trilateral meeting, calling it an “example of how nations should work for the benefit of the region,” and expressed hope that it could set an example for cooperation with Arab states.
Herzog and Anastasiades also discussed opportunities to expand Israeli-Cypriot ties at the EU level.
Innovation, Science, and Technology Minister Orit Farkash-Hacohen signed an agreement with her Cypriot counterpart Kyriakos Kokkinos to cooperate in the areas of scientific research and technology. The agreement creates a new framework in which to promote joint research ideas for the two governments.