Presenting the situation in the Aegean Sea according to Turkey’s aspirations, the Sabah newspaper provocatively claimed that “Greece continued to escalate tensions since January 25, when the exploratory talks began.”
According to the newspaper, the incident with the “harassment” against the TCG Çeşme research vessel by four Greek F-16s on Tuesday, something the Greek Defence Ministry categorically denied, “added a new episode to the challenges in the Aegean.”
The article wonders what is the “purpose of Greece’s challenges” and whether it wants to “start a war” with Turkey.
Retired Admiral Ali Deniz Kutluk answered these questions.
Kutluk claims that Greece has chosen a “dangerous game” in the Aegean Sea and has the sympathy of the U.S. and the EU.
“Greek pilots grew up with hostility against Turkey. But this harassment is contrary to the rules of international law and military tactics,” he said.
“The Çeşme is free to carry out scientific research in these high seas and international waters. It does not threaten anyone,” he said.
He omitted that the Çeşme’s research in the central Aegean Sea is illegal because the NAVTEX, the international maritime navigational telex/notification system, was issued by the coastal station of Smyrna (Σμύρνα, Turkish: İzmir) instead of the Lemnos station.
The retired admiral asked Ankara to move directly to the U.S. and the EU, so that Turkey could gain “more sympathy” and to also face Greek challenges with determination.
He demanded that disarming the Greek Aegean islands should be raised as an issue, as well as questioning the sovereignty of dozens of islands and islets with an “unspecified status”, as he claimed.