Tensions rise in Eastern Mediterranean

Merkel holds telephone conversation with Erdogan

Jul 22, 2020
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has held a telephone conversation with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, according to reports Wednesday.
It has not been confirmed if the call took place late Tuesday or early Wednesday.
According to Turkey’s Directorate of Communications, the two leaders discussed developments in Syria and Libya, as well as bilateral relations, the economy and tourism.
Read more at www.ekathimerini.com

Turkish, German leaders discuss Syria, Libya

Jul 22, 2020
The leaders of Turkey and German discussed developments in Syria and Libya, as well as the fight against the coronavirus, Turkey’s Directorate of Communications said Wednesday.
The office said Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Angela Merkel also discussed bilateral relations and economy and tourism, in particular, during a telephone discussion.
Since April 2019, warlord Khalifa Haftar’s illegitimate forces have launched attacks on Tripoli and other parts of northwestern Libya, resulting in more than 1,000 deaths, including civilian women and children.
Read more at www.aa.com.tr

Hellenic Navy Hydrographic Service issues Navtex cancelling illegal Turkish Navtex

Jul 22, 2020
The Hellenic Navy Hydrographic Service on Wednesday issued a Navtex that cancels Turkey’s illegal Navtex issued the previous day and calls on seafarers to ignore it.
The Greek Navtex reports that the Turkish Navtex was issued by an unauthorised station and refers to illegal activities in a Greek area. In addition, it notes that only the hydrographic service at Heraklion has the authority to issue a Navtex in the specific area. A corresponding Navtex was also issued by Cyprus.
Read more at www.amna.gr

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Turkey’s NAVTEX for research inside Greece’s continental shelf, sets Armed Forces on alert

July 21, 2020
Turkey issued a NAVTEX on Tuesday for so-called “seismic research” in the area of the Greek continental shelf and set the Greek Armed Forces on alert.
In particular, Ankara plans to conduct research in the sea area south of Rhodes and Kastelorizo ​​and southeast of Crete, has blocked the sea area, according to Navtex published by the Antalya station.
Seismic vessel Oruc Reis is to conduct this research for hydrocarbon together accompanied by Ataman Supply Ship, and the Cengizhan Anchor Handling Vesse. The Turkish Navy will also be present for seismic research activities, some Turkish media report.
Read more at www.keeptalkinggreece.com

Athens serves Ankara with demarche over Kastellorizo

Jul 21, 2020
Greece’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday lodged a demarche with Turkey’s Foreign Ministry through its embassy in Ankara in protest at the announced plans for a Turkish seismic survey south and east of the Greek island of Kastellorizo from July 21-August 2.
Athens said that the new “illegal” Navtex issued by Ankara “constitutes an escalation of tension in the region” which reflects the country’s  “obsession with illegality and its utter contempt” for international law, international law of the sea, good neighborly rules and the European Union.
Read more at www.ekathimerini.com

PM Mitsotakis: “EU sanctions on Turkey is the only way to ongoing provocations”

Jul 21, 2020
“EU sanctions on Turkey is the only way to ongoing provocations,” Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Tuesday during a meeting with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas whose country is holding the rotating Presidency in the European Union. Short time later, Mitsotakis called for an emergency meeting with the Greek Foreign Minister and had phone conversations with the Defense Minister and the Chief of General Staff.
“We have a very clear stance of solidarity here towards Greece and Cyprus,” the German Foreign Minister.
Referring to the Turkey’s NAVTEX and the planned hydrocarbon inside the Greek continental shelf, South-East of Crete and Kastelorizo, Mitsotakis told Mass:
“Turkey once again adds another link to to the chain of aggressive actions against Greece, against Cyprus, and finally towards the European Union as a whole. […]   What I want to tell you is that Greece is watching all the developments with confidence and absolute readiness. Questioning the sovereign rights of Greece and Cyprus is questioning the sovereign rights of Europe as a whole.”
Read more atwww.keeptalkinggreece.com

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German FM Maas urges Turkey to avoid “provocative actions”

Jul 21, 2020
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas urged Turkey on Tuesday to fully engage in planned talks with the European Union and avoid “provocative actions” in the Eastern Mediterranean in an effort to head off a potential crisis with neighboring Greece.
“We have a very clear position: international law must be respected. Therefore, progress in relations with Turkey can only be achieved if Ankara avoids provocations in the eastern Mediterranean,″ Maas said after talks with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias in Athens.
“At the same time, within the European Union we see the need to engage in dialogue with Turkey,″ the German FM added.
Read more at www.keeptalkinggreece.com

Greek ambassador warns of Turkey, lauds Israeli gas pipeline approval

Jul 19, 2020
Greek Ambassador to Israel Panagiotis Sarris to Israel Panagiotis Sarris lauded the Israeli government’s milestone advancement of the EastMed gas-pipeline project Sunday, as he warned Turkey’s objections to the project and its expansionist moves in the Mediterranean posed security concerns.
The EastMed pipeline “turns energy into a catalyst for regional cooperation and stability, for the benefit of all. We want Turkey as an equal partner and not as the neighborhood bully, but this is currently proving difficult,” Sarris told The Jerusalem Post in a written statement.
Read more at www.jpost.com

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