Dendias warns EU: ‘Turkey’s provocation can lead to an accident’

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The Greek Foreign Minister, Nikos Dendias sent an official communication to the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borel and underlined that the aggressive rhetoric of Turkish officials could lead to an accident.

In his letter sent also to European Commission Vice President Margaritis Schinas and the European Commissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius, Mr Dendias referred to an incident on January 5, in which a Greek coast guard vessel was harassed by a Turkish patrol boat.

At the time, the Greek boat was trying to approach and identify three Turkish fishing boats, which had entered Greek territorial waters southeast of Farmakonisi in order to fish.

The letter also noted the lack of cooperation and the often aggressive attitude displayed by Turkish fishing crews toward both Greek coast guard vessels and Greek fishing craft, which was contrary to the legal fishing activities of Greek fishing vessels.

The Greek Foreign Minister notes that, “this repeated Turkish practice creates a dangerous security environment and increases the possibility of an ‘accident’, which could be used by Ankara in order to escalate the tension between Greece and Turkey”.

According to the sources, he also stressed that the EU must take steps if Turkey continues the above practice and impose a financial cost on Turkey, demanding the implementation of EU regulations for countering illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, which state that any third country refusing to comply can be labelled “uncooperative” and its fishing products banned from EU markets.

Source: AMNA

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