German Foreign Minister Haiko Maas is expected in Athens today, as part of Berlin’s new mediation initiative, aimed at the de-escalation of tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as a direct Greek-Turkish dialogue.

The German official will hold talks with his Greek counterpart, Nikos Dendias, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, as well as SYRIZA President Alexis Tsipras, while in the afternoon, Mr. Maas will visit Ankara, where he will meet with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Mr. Maas’ talks will focus on the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean, the EU-Russia relations as well as the situation in Libya, in view of the informal meeting of EU Foreign Ministers to be held in Berlin on August 27 and 28.

On Monday, the German government expressed regret over the extension of Turkey’s NAVTEX, which he described as a “step in the wrong direction” and warned that tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean were straining European Union’s relationship with Turkey.