eKathimerini — The first official visit of a member of the British royal family to Greece constitutes a “milestone” in the relations between the two countries, Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Wednesday, as he welcomed the Prince of Wales at Maximos Mansion on Wednesday.
“It is a great pleasure to welcome you to Greece. It is the first time you visit the country officially and I think it is the first time a member of the British royal family makes an official visit to Greece,” he said.
“This is a very important event and I believe that your visit could be a milestone in the bilateral relations of the two countries, especially today, when both countries are faced with many important challenges, and that is why I believe we need to further strengthen our cooperation,” he added.
Prince Charles expressed his gratitude for the welcome and noted he has visited privately the country before with the Duchess of Cornwall.
“This visit underlines the ties between the two countries” which are long-lasting, Prince Charles said, adding he hoped the two countries will continue in the future to share all the things they are sharing now.
He also said he hoped Greece and the UK will be able to achieve a great deal in migration and security and other challenges the two countries are facing.
Greece is among the few nations – and the only EU member state – not to have been officially visited by the Queen. The Duke of Edinburgh, born a Greek prince on the island of Corfu, was forced to flee after the Asia Minor disaster in 1923 and relations soured further when the Greeks voted to do away with the monarchy in a referendum in 1974.
The royal couple will fly to Crete on Friday.