Dendias slams Turkey’s ‘gunboat diplomacy,’ calls for greater US presence in region

Dendias slams Turkey’s ‘gunboat diplomacy,’ calls for greater US presence in region

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias has accused Turkey of pursuing “gunboat diplomacy” in the eastern Mediterranean region, adding that pressure from Washington is crucial in making Ankara comply with international law.

“Although tensions have eased, I regret to say that I have not yet seen tangible proof that Turkey has changed its behavior and its convictions, meaning proof that Turkey complies with international law and the international law of the sea,” Dendias told an Economist conference in Athens on Friday, adding that the days of gunboat diplomacy and of spheres of influence are over.

Dendias said that if Turkey continues with the provocations and the illegal activity, the European Union will have no other option but to impose sanctions. 

“I think this has become clear to the Turkish side,” he said.

Asked what he expects of the Joe Biden administration, the Greek foreign minister said: “We want a greater American presence in the region,” adding that “the US is the only country in the world that can persuade Turkey that respect for international law and human rights is the only way and it will deliver benefits for everyone.”

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