Turkish Navy divers take "provocative" photo holding Turkish flag at Souda Bay in Crete

Screen Shot 2019 03 21 at 10.55.55 am

Screen Shot 2019 03 21 at 10.55.55 am

Divers from the Turkish Navy took photographs holding the Turkish flag at the bottom of Souda Bay in Crete, which has been condemned by Greece and declared provocative, after it was posted on social media by the Turkish Ministry of Defence and then retweeted by NATO’s Maritime Command official Twitter account.

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*Retweet that was later deleted by NATO

The divers were taking part in a NATO exercise in Greek territorial waters as part of the ARIADNE-19 exercise from March 14 to 17, where Greece is hosting a number of naval forces in Souda Bay.

The Turkish divers participated in the drill as part of the Turkish Special Forces (SAS) team that arrived in Crete for the drills and during the dive, they pulled out a Turkish flag and were photographed holding it.

NATO has since taken down the photograph, but this was not until Greek officials demanded they delete the retweet.

Greece’s Ministry of Defense said the move from Turkey was a "blunt" provocation and demanded the image be removed by NATO, who are currently investigating why the image was retweeted in the first place.