Ankara wants all differences with Athens, Nicosia ‘on the table’

Ankara wants all differences with Athens, Nicosia ‘on the table’

Despite the fact that ongoing talks between Greek and Turkish military officials in Athens are ostensibly focused on finding ways to revive confidence-building measures, Turkey’s Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Wednesday that he has instructed his country’s delegation to place all the differences dividing Athens and Ankara in the Aegean, Cyprus and the Eastern Mediterranean “on the table.”

For its part, Athens insisted on Wednesday that the two delegations have been authorized to discuss strictly technical issues and not political matters.

According to the caption of a photo posted on social media on Tuesday of Turkish Ambassador in Athens Burak Ozugergin and the Turkish delegation, its members are in Athens to discuss the code of conduct in the Aegean.

Turkey has described an agreement signed in Istanbul in 1988 by then foreign ministers Karolos Papoulias and Mesut Yilmaz which outlined guidelines to prevent accidents and incidents in international waters and airspace as a “code of conduct.”

However, both countries have marked differences over the definition of international waters and airspace.

If progress is made in the week-long talks between the delegations, then the next meeting will take place in Istanbul.

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