Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias, who is paying an official five-day visit to the USA, met with his counterpart Secretary of State John Kerry in Washington yesterday (April 20). In their brief remarks, before meeting behind closed doors, Kerry referred to the strong ties between the United States and Greece, and to the enormous contribution that Greek-Americans make to the country, while also expressing concern about new legislation in Greece that could lead to the early release of convicted terrorists.

On his part, Kotzias said that this new legislation "will not allow any terrorist to walk freely," as it will only be a change in detention methods.

Speaking to journalists later, the Greek minister explained that as regards the relevant bill of the Justice ministry, the attitude of the Greek government "is defined and determined by the fact that there are eleven rulings of the European Court of Human Rights regarding the conditions in prisons." He stressed that none of the convicted who are subject to the provisions of the new law are going to be released, but will be detained under different conditions provided by the new law.

See also Secretary Kerry Delivers Remarks with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias [video]; US State Dep’t: Remarks with Nikos Kotzias (20.04)