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Greek Armed Forces chief: Turkey acts as a provocateur in region

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The head of the Greek Armed Forces said he is satisfied by the level of understanding shown by the United States on issues relating to Turkey, noting that the country “acts as a provocateur” in the wider region.

“I am happy to say that, since last year, the United States has been listening to us from a different perspective,” General Konstantinos Floros, Chief of the Hellenic National Defense General Staff (GEETHA), said during a virtual event organised by the American Hellenic Institute (AHI). 

“They understand much more clearly what we mean when we say that Turkey is acting as a provocateur that brings instability to the region. Everyone in the region, including the United States, are very interested in stability and peace, and the only troublemaker is Turkey,” he added.

“This is very clear and a great advantage of recent years is that we do not feel alone about these complaints about Turkey. There are now many countries protesting about Turkey.”

Regarding Turkey’s threat to go to war with Greece (casus belli) if the latter extends its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles in the Aegean, the head of GEETHA described it as “non-serious,” noting that the Greek government reserves the right to exercise its legal sovereignty whenever it wishes and deems it appropriate.

Floros also expressed his satisfaction with the view expressed by US officials that all islands are entitled to continental shelf and exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

He also noted that the launch of the Greece-US Strategic Dialogue in 2018 and the updating of the Mutual Defense Cooperation Agreement (MDCA) created a positive momentum, which has opened a new chapter in the defense cooperation of the two countries.