Greek Prime Minister doesn’t believe armed conflict with Turkey ‘will ever happen’

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Greece’s Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, said on Sunday that he can’t imagine tensions with Turkey could ever escalate into armed conflict.

When asked by The Associated Press whether a recent escalation in rhetoric from Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan could be the prelude to military action, Mitsotakis replied negatively.

“I don’t believe [armed conflict] will ever happen. And if, God forbid, it happened, Turkey would receive an absolutely devastating response. And I think they know it very well. Turkey knows the competence of the Greek (armed) forces,” Mitsotakis said during a press conference at the Thessaloniki International Fair.

Kyriakos Mitsotakis speaking at the Thessaloniki International Fair on Sunday. Photo: AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos.

The Greek Prime Minister added that, despite Erdogan’s “unacceptable” comments, he was still open to dialogue and a meeting with him.

This comes as Erdogan said in May this year that he has no intention of ever meeting with Mitsotakis again.

Since then, Erdogan has recently warned Greece it would pay a “heavy price” if it continues to harass Turkish fighter jets over the Aegean and hinted at military action.

This comes as Erdogan has made provocative statements recently.

According to AP News, Turkey’s coast guard also alleged on Saturday that Greek coast guard ships opened fire on a cargo vessel sailing in international waters in the Aegean Sea.

There were no casualties in the shooting 11 nautical miles southwest of the Turkish island of Bozcaada on Saturday, the Turkish statement said.

These ongoing tensions come at a low point in relations between the two NATO allies, who are separated by centuries-long enmity and contemporary disputes, including Aegean Sea boundaries and immigration.

Source: AP News.

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