With the escalation of tensions between the Mediterranean countries and Turkey, French President Emmanuel Macron spoke today (Thursday) about the need for the European Union to take a unified position against Ankara.
According to Sky News, Macron condemned Ankara’s unilateral actions in the region, and accused Turkey of escalating tensions and provocative actions in the eastern Mediterranean.
He said, “We hope that today’s discussions will lead to a solution to the crisis with Turkey … Avoiding conflict with Turkey does not mean negativity, and Ankara must clarify its position.”
“The European countries must take a unified and decisive stand against the Turkish president,” the French president said, describing Turkey’s maritime and military agreement with the Libyan national unity government as illegal.
The Greek Prime Minister publishes an article calling on the European Union to impose sanctions on Turkey.
For his part, the Greek Prime Minister issued today (Thursday) an article urging the European Union to impose “heavy sanctions” on Turkey as long as Ankara does not withdraw its ships from the disputed areas in the eastern Mediterranean.
“We need a dialogue,” Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsu Takis said in an article published in the British Times, the German Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the French newspaper Le Monde. But we are not at gunpoint. What threatens the security and stability of my country also threatens the securıty and safety of all members of the European Union.
He wrote: “This month, the leaders of the European Union will determine their response to Turkey.” If Turkey’s ships and maritime assets (outside the disputed area) are not removed, meaningful sanctions should be imposed.
Regarding Turkey, the Greek Prime Minister also said that they should return to the negotiating table and start work from where they stopped, when they withdrew from exploration talks in 2016. “Then, if we do not agree, we must go to The Hague”.
French Prime Minister Emmanuel Macron is to discuss Turkish relations with his Greek counterpart on Thursday.
Where the two sides will meet on the French island of Cris, along with the leaders of Portugal, Spain, Italy, Cyprus and Malta.
Greece is seeking help from NATO to confront Turkey
Greek official media reported that the Greek government will work in contact with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to confront the recent Turkish measures.
According to the report, Athens will formally request NATO on Thursday to allow Turkish ships to leave the Mediterranean.
Whereas, the Greek government is expected to submit proposals to NATO in relation to the recent conflict with Turkey. It is worth noting that Greece and Turkey are both members of NATO.
Greek media quoted the Greek government as saying that Athens is committed to dialogue to resolve the crisis with Turkey without threats or blackmail.
In recent months, Turkey has stepped up its activities, such as oil and gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean, which provoked a violent reaction from its southern and western neighbors, especially Greece.
In response to these threats, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on the European Union to take a neutral stance on tensions in the eastern Mediterranean, believing that the provocative statements in this regard would not help in solving the problem.