Germany’s foreign minister, Heiko Maas, has expressed optimism about improving EU-Turkey relations after a “difficult year” in 2020 with tensions rising between both sides over the situation in the eastern Mediterranean.

The comments from Maas come a day after Turkey’s foreign minister met with Germany’s interior minister to discuss a number of issues that have hurt relations between the European bloc and Ankara.

“We are interested in these talks, and of course in goals and results. Last year was a difficult year in the relationship between the EU and Turkey. This year looks to be a much better one,” Mass said in a statement.

Turkey-EU relations became increasingly tense during 2020, as disputes over migration, Ankara’s ongoing activities around Cyprus, and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s feud with French leader Emmanuel Macron put a strain on bilateral relations. (RT)