(Bloomberg) -- Greece plans to make it easier for Turkish citizens to visit some of the Aegean islands for a limited period of time by granting them a temporary visa, people familiar with the matter said. 

The initiative, which would revive an earlier procedure, may be announced during the visit by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Athens on Thursday for the High-Level Cooperation Council, the people said, who asked not to be named. The European Commission has approved Athens’ decision to grant this temporary visa, one of them added. 

“There is an open discussion, which is going very well, with the European Commission,” on the matter, Greece’s Migration minister Dimitris Kairidis said in a ERT TV interview Monday. “It’s not a matter of agreement with Turkey. It is our decision in cooperation with the European Commission, because we belong to Schengen,” the minister said, referring to the bloc’s border-control-free travel zone. 

Reviving the temporary visa measure would come as a boost to the tourism sector in the Greek islands and encourage economic activity between the two countries. It also shows that Turkey and Greece are gradually leaving behind them the period of heightened tension that brought them close to war in 2020.   

Relations between the Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Erdogan have eased since July, as the two have met twice and have agreed to try and maintain a calmer relationship despite the differences they have in a number of important issues, such as the delimitation of maritime boarders. They agreed to revive the High-Level Cooperation Council during their meeting in July. 

The council, which includes a series of meetings between ministers, is an initiative aiming at addressing various issues in Turkish-Greek relations. It started in 2010, but its last session was in 2016.

In an attempt to further control migration flows toward Greece, the neighboring countries have also agreed to appoint a Greek coastguard official in Turkey’s Izmir and a Turkish official in the Greek island of Lesvos, Kairidis also said.  

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