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Turkey denounces French-Greek Cypriot defence deal

August 17, 2020 at 1:34 pm

French President Emmanuel Macron (R) and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis speak following their meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris on 29 January 2020. [LUDOVIC MARIN/AFP via Getty Images]

Turkey on Sunday criticised the newly announced defence cooperation between France and the Greek Cypriotadministration of Southern Cyprus, Anadolu Agency reports.

According to a report, Turkey’s Vice-President Fuat Oktay said it is unacceptable under any circumstances thatFrance organises joint exercises with the Greek Cypriot administration and deploys its military aircraft to the islandcontrary to the 1959-60 agreements.

“It is essential for France not to seek adventure in Cyprus-related matters, and act much more responsibly,” he alsosaid.

France said last Wednesday that it will temporarily increase its military presence in the Eastern Mediterranean in thecoming days after President Emmanuel Macron and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis discussed the latestsituation in the region.

READ: France calls for sanctions on Turkey over Eastern Mediterranean drilling

Last month, French President Emmanuel Macron denounced Turkey’s energy exploration in the EasternMediterrenean in what he called Turkey’s violation of the sovereignty of Greece and Cyprus.

On the other hand, Turkey rejected Macron’s accusations with an official statement.

In the statement, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy said statements made by President Macron haveno value for Turkey.

Last year Turkey signed an agreement with Libya which demarcated their maritime borders and gave Ankara rights over parts of the Mediterranean Sea. Ever since then, France has been urging the EU to impose further sanctions on Turkey if Ankara violates Greek or Cypriot territorial waters.

France and Turkey each support an opposing side in the Libya conflict which sees the internationally-recognisedGovernment of National Accord, backed by Turkey, making significant military advances against the France-backed Libyan National Army.