September 23, 2021


Evangelos Venizelos 

Article published in Kathimerini 


A wiser Angela Merkel


The 2009-19 Greek adventure seemed to have a special place in German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s farewell reflection. Quite reasonably so. The crisis, or more precisely the difficult management of the consequences of the crisis that had been incubating for decades before becoming unmanageable in 2009, coincided with about two-thirds of Angela Merkel’s total term of office at Germany’s helm and, de facto, that of the European Union.

Moreover, Merkel experienced the whole Greek affair from beginning to end. She was in office during the same time as all the Greek prime ministers of the 2005-21 period. She obviously remembers the discussions on the fiscal and macroeconomic data of the 2005-09 period and the initial pan-European measures of 2008 that were taken under the illusion that the entirety of the eurozone member-states could avoid the vicious cycle that transformed the financial crisis into a fiscal crisis and vice versa. In a period spanning less than two years, this proved to be a false hope, unfortunately.

Tags: Articles

June 14, 2021

Evangelos Venizelos

Article published in Kathimerini 


The Greek-Turkish summit coincides with the Biden-Erdogan meeting, which will also take place on the sidelines of the NATO Summit in Brussels. When Recep Tayyip Erdogan meets with the Greek prime minister, he will be expected to have finalized his own answers to the clear strategic questions that President Joe Biden is posing to all NATO member-countries, the vast majority of which are also members of the European Union. 

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήArticles

April 13, 2021

Article published in Kathimerini 


National duty for self-reflection and truth


The public debate during the past few days between two former prime ministers, Kostas Simitis and Kostas Karamanlis, has created the need for an introductory remark on the conditions and purposes for a public discussion on foreign policy issues, especially when it involves persons who have managed said issues and possess presumption of knowledge and responsibility.

The review of various periods or even moments, when these were pivotal, the clarification of factual data and honest and unbiased self-reflection, can facilitate the elaboration of the national strategy, the familiarization of the public opinion with the complexity and difficulty of the issues, without simplifications, covering up and ornaments and finally the formation of the necessary national consensus. Defending past choices is not only the right, but also the obligation of those who have handled national policy in the name of the Greek people. This, however, is secondary to the obligation of everyone participating in the constant exercise of truthfulness about the facts, deeper understanding of the situation and foresight as to the developments and risks, which is the meaning of the national strategy.

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήArticles

December 1, 2020


Evangelos Venizelos 

Article published in Kathimerini 


"The discourse on the dialogue: The context of Greco-Turkish relations"


Turkey is well aware that Greece is not Syria, Libya, nor Nagorno-Karabakh. Turkey appreciates the fact that Greece has been a member of NATO since 1952 (the year of its accession along with Turkey) and a member of the European Union and the eurozone – more than a significant part of Greek public opinion does. It takes into account the high level of Greco-American relations and takes this parameter into account now that it is trying to assess the new American landscape following the election of President Joe Biden. It knows that over the next 55 days presidential authority will be exercised by Donald Trump, but over the exact same period the president-elect will be shaping his basic decisions. 

The first decisions of this kind, I believe, along with many others, will be to restore the strategic status of the West based on Euro-Atlantic relations. If this happens, ambitious regional players who have rushed to exploit the large gaps and internal dysfunctions and contradictions of a strategically relaxed West will see a significant reduction in the margin of their initiatives.

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήArticles

September 23, 2020


Evangelos Venizelos 

Article published in Kathimerini 

The commitments arising from the invocation of international law


The delimitation of the continental shelf and the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) has the “advantage” of being an institutionalized and compulsory procedure under international law (articles 74 and 83 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea [UNCLOS]) that includes consultations, negotiations, agreement between states with opposite or adjacent coasts and whose potential areas of jurisdiction overlap or, in the event of an inability to reach an agreement, recourse to the procedures provided for in the UNCLOS and in the end a “procedural” agreement for a joint recourse to an international judicial or arbitration procedure. 

Diplomatic initiatives to delimit the continental shelf and the EEZ are therefore an obligation under international law. This does not mean that the other side will agree or that it will not attempt to involve other matters in the process. It is important that the Greek position is clear. For a country like Greece, which always states that the axis of its foreign policy is respect for international law, such initiatives should be a given. This is after all showcased in the recent agreement between Greece and Italy on the conversion of the 1977 continental shelf delimitation agreement to an EEZ delimitation agreement, before it was even declared, without a change in the overall limits, and it is also evident in the even more recent partial EEZ delimitation agreement with Egypt west of the 28th (to be exact of the 27.59th) meridian and up to the 26th meridian.

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήArticles

September 1, 2020


Evangelos Venizelos interview with Kathimerini

By Pavlos Papadopoulos 

Ex-FM Evangelos Venizelos warns against ‘nervous actions without strategy’


Evangelos Venizelos, a former deputy prime minister and minister for foreign affairs, reveals previously untold aspects in the history of exploratory talks between Greece and Turkey.

In an interview with Kathimerini on Sunday, Venizelos, a Socialist MP, offers his take on recent developments while expressing his opinion on what should be done with regard to the country’s disputes with Ankara.

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήInterviews


Evangelos Venizelos 

Published on Verfassungsblog, May 27, 2020


Passive and Unequal: The Karlsruhe Vision for the Eurozone


1. The decision of the Bundesverfassungsgericht (BVerfG) on the European Central Bank’s PSPP program did not come as a shock. All the critical arguments of that decision can be found explicitly or implicitly in the BVerfG’s referral to the Court of Justice of the EU on 18 July 2017. The CJEU replied through the preliminary ruling of 11 December 2018 (Weiss and Others, C-493/17).

2. The real object of the decision of the BVerfG is the economic governance of the Eurozone or rather the big bet of European solidarity and European integration, in the midst of a pandemic even. These are all of particular interest to Greece, which has acted as a lever of pressure and as a laboratory to test new institutions of economic governance and even quantitative easing.

Tags: Ευρωπαϊκή ΈνωσηArticles

July 11, 2020


Evangelos Venizelos about Hagia Sophia


The conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque symbolizes, in a most extreme way, President Erdogan's strategic choice to place Turkey outside the West. Not just outside the bounds of Western legal and political culture, but outside the bounds of the West as a historical and strategic entity.

Up to this point, Turkey had been supporting an ambiguous position, claiming its “exceptionalism” and its uniqueness in relation to the West, but it also wanted to highlight its position as a member of NATO, to claim a form of relationship with the EU, to place great importance in its relationship with the USA and especially with the style of Mr. Trump.

Tags: Statements

June 17, 2020


Evangelos Venizelos 

Article published in Kathimerini


Delineating maritime zones


With the agreement signed on June 9, 2020 between Greece and Italy, the delimitation line of the 1977 bilateral agreement on the demarcation of the continental shelf of the two countries will now be used for the delimitation of the other maritime zones, in which the two countries are entitled to exercise their sovereign rights or jurisdiction under international law.

In practical terms this means that when Greece declares an exclusive economic zone (EEZ), in general or only in the specific area, that zone will already be delimited and its area will be the exact same as that of the continental shelf already demarcated since 1977. Article 2 of the agreement provides that if one of the contracting parties decides to declare a maritime zone, practically an EEZ, it is obliged to inform the other party as soon as possible.

Tags: Εξωτερική ΠολιτικήArticles

28 April 2020


Evangelos Venizelos *


"Pandemic, Fundamental Rights and Democracy - The Greek Example" **



 A. The pandemic and the acquis of modernity - A challenge to fundamental rights and liberal democracy.


1. The Coronavirus pandemic is not only a health, economic and social challenge but a major challenge for national constitutions, international law and the EU legal order as well. More precisely, the pandemic is evolving into a comprehensive challenge to the acquis of modernity, i.e. liberal democracy, human rights and the guarantees of the rule of law, the nation state and its sovereignty, the organization of international society and the role of the United Nations and international organizations, regional cooperation, European integration and solidarity, and the degree of economic development and the “western way of life”. Our analysis will be focused on fundamental rights, while also making some necessary references to the function of liberal democracy institutions.

The Greek case is comparatively interesting in many ways. Greece has emerged from an economic crisis lasting nearly ten years (2009-2019); a crisis that led to harsh austerity measures and brought to action the judicial control on the constitutionality of the relevant legislation, but also its compatibility with EU law and the European Convention on Human Rights. The Greek Debt Crisis also led to changes in the rules of the economic governance of the EU and the Eurozone.

Tags: ΠανδημίαArticles