The Turkish Foreign Ministry announced it would not abandon its “sovereign rights” in Kastellorizo or airspace covering 10 nautical miles, despite the possibility of sanctions imposed against it.
The statement was made in response to an article by Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias in the newspaper Ta Nea.
“Greece, as the spoiled child of Europe, aims to provoke European Union sanctions on Turkey based on its maximalist and illegitimate maritime boundary and airspace claims,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement before the upcoming EU Summit.
“No sanctions will ever make Turkey compromise its sovereign rights in Kastellorizo or 10 nautical mile airspace,” Ankara said in a statement, adding that “Greece should engage in unconditional dialogue with Turkey, sooner rather than later.”
New Provocation: Turkey issues NAVTEX near Greek islands starting day before European Council Summit
— Turkish MFA (@MFATurkey) December 5, 2020
In Dendias’ article entitled “Turkey’s efforts are to create a new Yalta”, he writes that the neighbouring country “conducts military operations in foreign territories, occupies parts of neighbouring countries, threatens war, challenges the sovereignty and sovereign rights of European countries, transports jihadists and interferes in the internal affairs of other countries by supporting extremist movements.”
“It seeks to develop a sphere of influence in the wider region – to create a new Turkish Yalta,” he added.
Turkey has become a clear threat to the stability of Europe, the Eastern Mediterranean, the Arab world and the Caucasus, the Greek FM wrote, adding that Ankara is openly undermining the cohesion of Western organizations, such as NATO.
Referring to the upcoming Summit, Dendias said that in October the European Council left a window of opportunity for Turkey to comply, but it did just the opposite.
“Greece’s stance is not dictated by a punitive attitude towards Turkey, but by the need to defend sovereignty and sovereign rights, as the Mitsotakis government has made clear in every direction. We want a long-standing good neighbourly relationship, based on full respect for international law and possibly if Turkey so wishes with a European perspective. We are always open to a constructive dialogue on these bases. Turkey must prove in practice that it endorses the idea of this dialogue,” the article concluded.
A video is going viral on social media showing soldiers singing the Greek National Anthem as they approach Kastellorizo.
The video which was posted on Facebook by Fotis Manousis, shows the soldiers proudly singing the Greek National Anthem on the deck of the ship that was transporting them to Kastellorizo. They were on their way to the remote island to replace the previous guard.
“When we all face the pandemic from the security of our home and whine about everything that happens, there are these men, who with so much enthusiasm go to guard the borders of our homeland! I feel proud of all these Greek children and of the parents who raised them,” Manousis posted with the video.