© 2021 Greek Community Tribune All Rights Reserved
Turkey’s Aegean moves monitored by Greece
Αthens is closely monitoring Turkey’s latest moves in the Aegean and the Eastern
Mediterranean after a series of what it views as suspicious incidents.
The most recent concerns the passage of a Turkish fishing fleet not only within an area of a
potential Greek exclusive economic zone (EEZ), but also within its territorial waters.
More specifically, on Wednesday the Hellenic Coast Guard was alerted when Turkish fishing
boats moved within the coastal zone south of Gavdos island, off Crete. The Turkish fishermen
complained of bad weather and asked to be allowed to move their trawlers into Cretan
waters. Finally, some of them were taken yesterday to Kissamos Bay and others off the coast
The movement of Turkish fishing boats south of Crete has alarmed Athens, given that in
recent years Ankara has invested in the development of an industrial fishing fleet with the aim
of joining the competition in the Eastern Mediterranean, and to also support its claims in the
Ankara has been relentless in its effort to show Athens that there are clear Turkish interests in
the area south of Crete, given that the illegal Turkish-Libyan maritime memorandum covers
areas south and east of the island.
Moreover, Turks treat Gavdos at best (as there are some who doubt that it has been legally
assigned to Greece) as an island that has no continental shelf and as such cannot have an
impact on the calculation of EEZs or other maritime zones.
Defence Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos discussed Greece’s relations with Turkey in an
extensive interview with Cypriot news channel RIK on Thursday in which he criticized Ankara’s
“revisionist” policies in the wider region.
“We are cautious but are acting in good faith. This is why we are taking part in these
exploratory talks,” he said of the ongoing exploratory talks between the two countries.
Panagiotopoulos also discussed the tensions between the two countries in the summer of
2020 and reiterated the Greek position of solving tensions through diplomatic and political
means, stating that “there must be understanding and abidance especially towards
international law, which governs the relations between states.”
Adelaide, South Australia