Meeting with the German chancellor on Thursday, NATO secretary-general reiterated “dialogue and de-escalation” to defuse the recent tension between Turkey and Greece over the offshore energy exploration.
“I am in constant touch with Greece and Turkey. My message is that the situation must be resolved in a spirit of allied solidarity, and in line with international law,” Jens Stoltenberg said in a joint news conference with Angela Merkel in Berlin.
“Dialogue and de-escalation are in everybody’s interest,” he added.
NATO chief also praised Germany’s efforts to “find a constructive way forward” on the issue.
Merkel for her part said Germany is uncomfortable with the tension between the two NATO allies in the Eastern Mediterranean and will discuss the right ways and opportunities to be followed in this regard.
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas on Monday visited Greece and Turkey, encouraging both countries to engage in dialogue to avoid conflict in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Apparently seeking to block Turkey’s legitimate maritime territorial claims, Greece signed exclusive economic zone (EEZ) deals with Italy on June 9 and with Egypt on Aug. 7.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry slammed the latter in a statement, asserting that Greece and Egypt share no sea borders and that the deal is “null and void.”
It added that the demarcated area in the pact is located in Turkey's continental shelf, as Ankara reported to the UN.
By Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak