Erdogan Says Willing To Meet Greek PM Over East Med Tensions
Muhammad Irfan 1 month ago Sat 19th September 2020 | 12:20 AM
Istanbul, Sept 18 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 19th Sep, 2020 ) :President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday said Turkey was ready to meet Greece's leader to resolve the standoff over energy exploration in contested waters in the eastern Mediterranean.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu later on Friday said the Greek ambassador Michael-Christos Diamessi was summoned to the foreign ministry in Ankara over an item in Dimokratia newspaper, seen atop its website.
"The use of offensive language is contrary to our country's political culture and can only be condemned.
" At the centre of the Greece-Turkey row was Ankara's deployment last month of a seismic research vessel, the Oruc Reis, and an accompanying fleet of warships in disputed waters near the Greek island of Kastellorizo.
Turkish officials ended the month-long mission and ordered the vessel back to shore last weekend for maintanance and replenishment.
Erdogan also signalled that Oruc Reis would return to its work, while also saying that its withdrawal was deliberate.
"If we pulled Oruc Reis back to the port for maintenance, it has a meaning," he said. "It means 'let's give a chance to diplomacy, let's show a positive approach'." Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias in Prague on Friday said Greece believed "a dialogue should start and that international law should not be violated. Of course in this area nobody should try to prevail by force." He added Greece was "always open to a dialogue with Turkey as regards coastal waters in the exclusive economic zone, provided that Turkey stops its provocative acts in the area." Turkey's Yavuz drillship, meanwhile, will continue it search for oil and gas off Cyprus until October 12 despite international calls to withdraw.
"We would like our partners and friends in the EU to draft a list of sanctions which should not be imposed on Turkey immediately but rather serve as an example of sanctions that could be imposed on Turkey if it doesn't stop its unlawful acts," Dendias said.