- A bitter quarrel has broken out between
the United States and its Nato ally Greece, over a verbal attack on President
Bill Clinton by the Greek Foreign Minister, Theodore Pangalos.
- The US State Department in Washington
accused Mr Pangalos of making outrageous and insulting comments, after
the foreign minister referred to Mr Clinton as a "shameless liar".
- "When friends and allies disagree
they should share their concerns privately rather than resort to these
kind of insulting and spurious public criticisms," said the State
Department spokesman James Rubin.
- Mr Pangalos's remarks were made last
week in the province of western Thrace.
- He was speaking about American policy
on Cyprus and Washington's efforts to mediate between Greek and Turkish
- Mr Pangalos's remarks prompted a formal
protest from Washington.
- But he reinforced his comments over the
weekend, saying Greece had had enough of US efforts to mediate the Cyprus
- He also said Greek Americans should consider
ending their support for American election campaigns.
- Greek frustration
- The US ambassador to Greece, Nicholas
Burns, has been having high level meetings in Athens to try to resolve
- But the BBC Washington correspondent
says the Greek government appears to be standing by the remarks.
- This, our correspondent says, is an indication
of the frustration with American efforts to mediate the Cyprus dispute.
- Greek officials say Washington seems
more focused on preventing the Greek deployment of anti-aircraft missiles
in Cyprus than on pressuring the Turkish backed administration in the north
to negotiate - a charge that Washington denies.