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Turkey to Greece: Act responsibly

Oruc Reis seismic research vessel, sets sail from Antalya to conduct seismic studies in Eastern Mediterranean, on December 23, 2020, in Antalya, Turkey [Süleyman Elçin / Anadolu Agency]
Oruc Reis seismic research vessel, sets sail from Antalya to conduct seismic studies in Eastern Mediterranean, on December 23, 2020, in Antalya, Turkey [Süleyman Elçin / Anadolu Agency]

Turkey on Saturday urged Greece to act in a 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, reports Anadolu Agency.

"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 demilitarised 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 neighbourly relations," the spokesperson added.

Read: Greece increases military spending by 57% due to tension with Turkey

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 December 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 favour of resolving all outstanding problems in the region through international law, good neighbourly relations, dialogue, and negotiation.

Read: Turkish vessel leaves port to continue E.Med research

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Europe & RussiaGreeceNewsTurkey
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