Foreign Ministry sources emphasized that no one will react to the extension to 12 nautical miles in the Ionian Sea.
By Presidential Decree, 12 nautical miles in the Ionian Sea is proceeding ahead with bays closed and a straight line drawn in the region.
The next step, in consultation with Italy, is the extension of the Greek Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) to 12 miles.
The Athens-Tirana disputes over the EEZ in the Northern Ionian will finally be resolved in The Hague.
The first step for the final settlement of the EEZ between Athens and Rome took place on Monday when a Presidential Decree entered into force.
“Our next step, after the closure of the bays, is the extension to 12 nautical miles. It was the prerequisite to go to the regulation of the EEZ,” sources close to Foreign Ministry chief Nikos Dendias confirmed to Sputnik Hellas.
“We are not in it yet. It will be settled with a bill in the near future,” the foreign ministry sources continued, adding that “The expansion of the EEZ is automatic, without question.”
This is because of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which has been signed by both Greece and the vast majority of states with the exception of 15 countries, many of them landlocked and without sea access anyway.
“The EEZ was something we had already agreed with Italy seven months ago, it is the next step and it was, we emphasize, pre-agreed,” the same sources pointed out.
In the Ionian Sea, differences over the EEZ with Albania are pending.
“However, the process of settling them was recently agreed”, the Foreign Ministry reminds us.
“We will both go to The Hague. It is agreed. We are appealing to The Hague because the previous delimitation of the EEZ had failed in the Constitutional Court of Albania,” the sources explained.
“We clarify it. There is no friction with Albania. We will resolve the issue in The Hague. The settlement of the EEZ in the Northern Ionian is the continuation of the agreement on the EEZ with Italy,” the sources concluded regarding Albania.
Regarding the pending issues in the Eastern Aegean and the unresolved disputes with Turkey, the foreign ministry sources said “we do not have anything to announce yet.”
“They are somewhere else on the horizon, it is a serious issue, but there is nothing to announce yet,” the sources summarized.
Ioanna Kleftogianni is a correspondent for Sputnik Hellas.