By Ibrahim Erikan
Turkey on Saturday warned Greece against its provocative acts in the eastern Mediterranean and Aegean regions, saying those acts were being "noted".
Last Sunday, there were reports that Greek youths tried to plant a flag on an islet near Didim, southwestern Turkey, the latest in a string of similar incidents.
“Greece is indulging in provocative acts in eastern Mediterranean and Aegean, despite being a member of the European Union and NATO, while we are fighting terrorism in Afrin,” EU minister Omer Celik said, speaking at the youth branches congress of ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party in southern Adana province.
“We firmly noted those provocations by Greece. Being an EU member and an ally of Turkey, it should support us in our hard times,” Celik added, referring to Turkey’s ongoing counter-terrorism operation in Syria’s Afrin.
Turkey on Jan. 20 launched Operation Olive Branch to remove YPG/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin. On March 18, Turkish troops and Free Syrian Army members liberated Afrin town center.
In February, a Turkish patrol boat rammed into a Greek Coast Guard patrol boat near the Kardak islets in the southeastern Aegean.
In January, the Turkish Coast Guard blocked Greece’s defense minister from approaching Kardak to lay a wreath there.
In 1996, a decades-long dispute between Turkey and Greece over uninhabited Aegean islets brought the two countries to the brink of armed conflict.