Turkey

Turkish navy thwarts Greek harassment in Aegean Sea

Greek coast guards harass legally operating Turkish merchant ship, flee scene upon arrival of army elements

Ali Murat Alhas   | 09.04.2020
Turkish navy thwarts Greek harassment in Aegean Sea

ANKARA 

The Greek coast guards harassing a Turkish-flagged merchant ship which was traveling in line with the international maritime law in south of the Samos Island of the Aegean Sea, immediately left the area following arrival of the Turkish Armed Forces, said security sources on Thursday.

The Turkish vessel "Akinturk-2" was harassed by the Greek guard boats near Samos Island last week while it was traveling using its right to freedom of navigation in compliance with the international maritime law, the sources said.

Turkish air and naval forces, and coast guard units stepped into action upon hearing the distress call of the ship, and moved towards the scene while maritime surveillance command repeatedly warned the Greek coastal guard units.

The Greek elements left the scene following the arrival of navy forces and coast guard units, and the merchant ship continued its course later on.

Security sources said the Turkish Armed Forces are determined to protect Turkish rights and interests under the international law in the Mediterranean and Aegean seas.

This is not the first time the Aegean Sea witnesses Greek aggression as during Turkey's military exercise Sea Wolf in 2019 it had maneuvered very close to a Turkish corvette endangering navigational safety in violation of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.

Turkish authorities had said Ankara administration was in favor of settling regional issues through peace and negotiations, but it was ready to take necessary measures in cases of violations.


* Ali Murat Alhas contributed to this story from Ankara.

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