The European Union is preparing sanctions against Turkey that could be discussed at the bloc’s next summit on Sept. 24 in response to the eastern Mediterranean dispute with Greece, the EU’s top diplomat said on Friday according to Reuters.
The measures could include individuals, ships or the use of European ports, said the European Union Minister for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell.
He added that the EU would focus on everything related to “activities we consider illegal.”
The revelation was made during today’s the EU’s Foreign Ministers information meeting in Berlin where discussions to support Greece and Cyprus whose continental shelves are being violated by illegal Turkish seismic research.
Conclusive discussions on the sanctions will not be held until September 24 formal EU meeting, however, Borrell, revealed that the EU was ready to sanction Turkish vessels, block their access to EU ports and cut off supplies, while also imposing sanctions that could directly target the Turkish economy.
“We can go to measures related to sectoral activities … where the Turkish economy is related to the European economy,” Borrell told a news conference, referring to possible sanctions.
However, Borrell and as expected, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, said the EU first wanted to give dialogue a chance to cool tensions between Greece and Turkey.
The cooling of tensions is unlikely going to happen, especially since only as recently as a few days ago, one of the top officials of the Recep Tayyip Erdoğan regime tweeted his desire for Turkey to invade northern Greece and the eastern Aegean Islands.
Metin Külünk, an ideologue of Erdoğan’s who is a Member of Parliament of the same ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), from the same youth movement Erdoğan, and from the same province as Erdoğan’s parents, has gone to Twitter to call for a Greater Turkey, as reported by Greek City Times.
With the Turkish economy in collapse, if such sanctions are passed in September, this will be another major blow.
Turkey’s economy is expected to contract by nearly 12% in the second quarter due to the coronavirus lockdown, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, logging its worst year-over-year performance in more than a decade. Earlier this week, the Turkish lira fell to a record low of 7.41 per dollar. Meanwhile, unemployment hovers just below 25% according to renowned Turkish economist Mahfi Egilmez.