NEWS

Athens lodges demarche with Ankara over Greek island sovereignty 

Athens lodges demarche with Ankara over Greek island sovereignty 

Greece has lodged a demarche with Turkey to protest recent comments by Turkish officials who questioned the country’s sovereignty over its eastern Aegean islands. 

According to diplomatic sources, the Foreign Ministry stressed Athens’ “strong dissatisfaction, as well as its protest” against those comments, “which of course Greece dismisses as illegal and groundless.”

The ministry also said that these statements “are not just counterproductive, but are an escalation of Turkish provocative behavior,” and stressed “the oxymoron of Turkish positions” with Ankara “constantly invoking international law, while at the same time it is blatantly violating it.”

The demarche mentioned as examples Turkey’s 1995 threat to go to war with Greece – the so-called “casus belli” – if Athens exercises its legal right to extend its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles, as well as the illegal Turkey-Libya memorandum on maritime zones, and the “Blue Homeland” rhetoric. 

The Foreign Ministry also instructed the Greek embassies in the European Union, NATO and the members of the UN Security Council to brief them on the escalation of Turkey’s activities.