Berlin says disputes over search and rescue areas must be resolved on basis of 1979 SAR convention


Germany has said that Greece and Turkey must resolve any differences regarding areas of responsibility for search and rescue in the Aegean Sea on the basis of the 1979 International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue (SAR).

In a statement Tuesday, the Federal Foreign Ministry reiterated Germany’s position that any disputes in the Eastern Mediterranean must be resolved through dialogue between the parties involved.

Ankara on Sunday declared an expanded area of responsibility for search and rescue in the Aegean Sea, reaching up to 6 miles from Crete, as well as west of Kasos and Karpathos.

Turkish Transport Minister Adil Karaismailoglu said the aim was to include areas covered in Turkey’s Blue Homeland doctrine, which envisages vast areas under Turkish influence in the Mediterranean. He also presented a relevant map which basically shows half the Aegean as being Turkish.

Athens has said that Ankara’s move does not produce a legal effect.