Turkey, Politics, Europe

Turkey urges Greece to act in responsible manner

Greece continues its provocative and escalatory steps in the region, says Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson

Zuhal Demirci   | 26.12.2020
Turkey urges Greece to act in responsible manner

ANKARA 

Turkey on Saturday urged Greece to act in common sense and responsible manner, responding to a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) recently issued by Greece for a vast area in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean. 

“We see that Greece continues her provocative and escalatory steps in the region,” Hami Aksoy, the Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson, said in a statement.

"The latest example is the NOTAM promulgated by Greece by which she declared 15 military exercise areas, including the islands under demilitarized status, that blocks Aegean all along and a very large portion of the Eastern Mediterranean starting from January 4 until February 26, 2021,” Aksoy said.

He noted that Turkey's position with regards to reviving all dialogue channels with Greece, especially the exploratory talks, without any preconditions remains unchanged.

“We call on Greece to act in common sense and responsible manner by contributing to our efforts to strengthen peace and stability in the region within the framework of good neighborly relations," the spokesperson added.

Amid recent tensions in the region, Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration have increased their pressure on other EU members to impose sanctions on Turkey during the EU leaders’ summit on Dec. 11.

Turkey, which has the longest continental coastline in the Eastern Mediterranean, has rejected maritime boundary claims of Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration, and stressed that these excessive claims violate the sovereign rights of both Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots.

Ankara has sent several drill ships in the past weeks to explore for energy resources in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting its own rights in the region, as well as those of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

Turkish leaders have repeatedly stressed that Ankara is in favor of resolving all outstanding problems in the region through international law, good neighborly relations, dialogue, and negotiation.

*Writing by Merve Berker

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