Turkey’s Foreign Chief Says Greece Hiking Aegean Tensions

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

The on-again off-again war of words over who owns what in the Aegean has escalated again with Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu saying Greece is responsible for the troubles even though it’s Turkey that has sent warships and fighter jets to violate Greek airspace and waters.

“In their difficult days, we are always at their side. But in the Aegean and the Mediterranean, they are again increasing tension. They do bizarre things, which are not acceptable. Don’t we all want the eastern Mediterranean to become a region of peace and prosperity?” Cavusoglu told the 10th conference of Turkish ambassadors without giving any clue what he was talking about.

He also blamed the legitimate Cypriot government for the July, 2017 breakdown in reunification negotiations that collapsed when Turkey insisted on keeping an army on the northern third of the island it has occupied since an unlawful 1974 invasion.

“In order to reach a solution in Cyprus, a new process must be launched. Greek Cypriots do not want to cooperate. And this we saw last year. We saw it in Geneva, we saw it in Crans-Montana,” Tsavousoglou said, referring to sites in Switzerland where talks had been held. And “Greece is no different,” he alleged, blaming Greece and Cyprus for intransigence.