The deterioration in relations adopted the departure earlier on Monday of a Turkish ship, the Oruc Reis, to conduct work south of the Greek island of Kastellorizo, which is near Turkey’s southern coast.
Greece’s overseas ministry described the event as a “main escalation” and a “direct menace to peace within the area.”
Ankara had withdrawn the identical vessel from contested waters within the jap Mediterranean final month to “enable for diplomacy” earlier than an EU summit at which Cyprus pushed for sanctions in opposition to Turkey.
“Turkey has confirmed it lacks credibility. All those that believed Turkey meant all it stated earlier than the European summit of October 1 – 2 now stand corrected,” Greek authorities spokesman Stelios Petsas stated on Monday.
Turkish Power Minister Fatih Donmez wrote on Twitter that the Oruc Reis had weighed anchor after present process upkeep.
“We are going to proceed to discover, dig and shield our rights,” he wrote.
Relations between Greece and Turkey are difficult by a spread of disputes, from juristiction within the Mediterranean to ethnically cut up Cyprus.
The Cyprus scenario was infected final week by the Turkish Cypriot north partially reopening a seashore resort deserted by Greek Cypriot residents throughout a 1974 battle.
In an indication of the rising tensions, about 200 folks brandishing a big Greek flag burst via a checkpoint near Varosha in jap Cyprus on Sunday evening, making an attempt to cross to the Turkish Cypriot facet of the island.
Video footage confirmed them pushing via a thinly-staffed police cordon resulting in a United Nations managed buffer zone, lighting flares and chanting “Cyprus is Greek.”
On the summit in early October the EU stated it could punish Turkey if it continued operations within the area and that sanctions might be imposed as quickly as December. Ankara stated such a warning strained ties.
Greek authorities spokesman Petsas stated the EU doesn’t want to attend two months earlier than taking motion.
“Turkey did the exact reverse to what was sought by the European Council … So the one difficulty right here is to activate extra drastic options, for Turkey to really feel extra stick and fewer carrot this time,” Petsas stated.