Army chief warns of Aegean crisis

Army chief warns of Aegean crisis

A crisis over the southeastern Aegean island of Kastellorizo ​​will not be limited there, but will spread across a Greek-Turkish front, according to Hellenic National Defense General Staff Chief Konstantinos Floros on Friday.

His remarks came after Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu claimed again that islands that lie far from the Greek mainland, including Kastellorizo, are not entitled to a continental shelf.

Floros stressed that the concept of a crisis limited to one specific area does not really exist, as “it is impossible for something to happen in Kastellorizo ​​and not spread everywhere.” 

In addition, he stressed that preparations are being made, as there are ongoing exercises, area reservations and testing of plans.

"We know exactly what will happen and how it will happen,” he insisted, citing instructions from the Defense Ministry, but also the government and the prime minister’s office. 

Floros noted that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan may do what he says he will do, but “we do what we say” as well. “The Armed Forces are an organized army, navy and air force. It is very difficult to confront them and whoever does will face a very high cost, which is something our neighbors know,” he said.

He also said he has "every good intention to speak with the Turkish military leadership, but this cannot be done under conditions of constant threat.”He also said there is a serious risk of an accident in the Aegean, and that “if this happens, it will be caused by the daily pressure they put on us and they will be to blame.” However, he added that in the event of an accident, “we will see who lands and how.”

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told a European Union summit on Friday that “it is paradoxical to discuss sanctions against Russia over Ukraine and not to discuss [Turkey’s] violation of the sovereign rights of member-states of the European Union, Greece and Cyprus."

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