Greece has protested to Turkey over the deployment of a research vessel in the Aegean Sea, in what is called an “unnecessary” move as NATO allies seek to resume talks on a long-running maritime dispute.
This is reported by Euractiv.
The Turkish Navy said this week that the research vessel “Cesme” will conduct hydrographic surveys from February 18 to March 2 in an area of international waters where both sides have potential interests.
“This is an unnecessary step that does not contribute to a positive mood,” said Greek government spokesman Christos Tarantilis.
According to representatives of the Greek government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has filed an oral complaint.
According to Turkish diplomatic sources, Ankara believes that the area is in international waters, and oceanographic studies were not related to the dispute over the continental shelves.
They said the vessel would conduct the same scientific research that Greece had recently conducted in the area, which was allowed by a 1976 agreement between the two countries.
Greek officials said that although the Cesme operates in international waters, it is Greece’s responsibility to issue maritime warnings in this part of the Aegean Sea.