"Our common future in the Balkans cannot be built on nationalism, as has unfortunately happened in the past, or on third party plans for our region; it can be built on the great potential of our peoples, respect for international law and a common European vision for our region," Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in his joint statements with Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, Romania's Prime Minister Mihai Tudose and Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, after the conclusion of the first Quadrilateral Summit Greece-Bulgaria-Romania-Serbia, held in Varna.
All four leaders sent messages of peace, cooperation and stability and agreed that the next Summit will be held in Belgrade.
The Varna Summit was yet another step in further cooperation between the four countries in the fields of economy, energy, security and refugee. Greece's proposal to hold a European Union-Western Balkan Summit during the Bulgarian Presidency of the EU in the first half of 2018 was adopted. It was also agreed that the Prime Ministers of Greece and Bulgaria, Alexis Tsipras and Boyko Borissov, will make a joint request to the European Commission and its president Jean-Claude Juncker to secure European funding for the Thessaloniki-Varna rail link.
As far as the EU is concerned, Tsipras noted that "in order to enable the EU to play the role it deserves in the international arena, to strengthen its international role and its ability to support democracy, stability and international law, it must first of all be able to solve its own problems."
Moreover, he underlined that Greece would play a constructive role and stressed that the reunification of the Republic of Cyprus on the basis of a just and viable solution is one of the challenges the EU has to solve.
Tsipras said that they also talked about major development projects that if they proceed, the wider region will change.
"We will work for the benefit of peace and cooperation in the European Union, the strategy of the Danube and the Black Sea will continue," Borissov said.
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