Germany And France Give Turkey One Week To Halt Provocations In The Mediterranean

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Germany And France Give Turkey One Week To Halt Provocations In The Mediterranean

The two largest and most powerful European Union states, France and Germany, have accused Turkey of wrongful action in the Eastern Mediterranean. The issue relates to the Turkish vessel Oruc Reis which has previously been deployed in Greek and Cypriot waters in order to search for oil and gas reserves.

The European Union, Greece and Cyprus have all condemned the Turkish vessel disregarding international maritime law, and both France and Germany have now given Turkey a deadline, to expire in a few days, in which to halt provocations.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, in a joint news conference with German and Polish representatives, said:

"It's clear to us that Turkey is permanently carrying out provocative acts which are unacceptable."

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who also attended the conference, added:

"It's been twice that expected discussions have not taken place and we don't know when they will happen. We must wait to see if there is progress in a week and then we'll see what attitude needs to be adopted by the EU."

The German minister's statement refers to talks that were meant to occur after the previous deployment of the Oruc Reis in Greek waters in August, during which Greek and Turkish naval vessels collided. The naval ships involved were escorting the Oruc Reis through an international maritime corridor.

It is unknown in what manner the European Union or international community will react if Turkey does indeed continue to violate international law. Writing for Greek broadsheet newspaper Ekathimerini, Angelos Syrigos, a Member of the Greek Parliament for the ruling New Democracy party and associate professor of international law and foreign policy at Athens Panteion University, decried the West's stance thus far towards Turkish actions. He wrote:

"Erdogan wants to believe that international reactions will be lackluster again, as they have been so far toward Turkey's recent and constant violations of international law. This confidence does not just stem from the last European Council, where many member-states called for leniency and a more understanding attitude toward Turkey. There was also the reaction to Turkey's involvement in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia. Given the Armenian Genocide, the West's tolerance has been scandalous. Would the West act as indifferently if Germany, for example, were to arm and guide a country like Iran against Israel?"

Prof. Syrigos is hardly the first politician within Greece to demand greater solidarity from their Western allies.

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Thinking Humanity: Germany And France Give Turkey One Week To Halt Provocations In The Mediterranean
Germany And France Give Turkey One Week To Halt Provocations In The Mediterranean
The two largest and most powerful European Union states, France and Germany, have accused Turkey of wrongful action in the Eastern Mediterranean.
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