Greek Coast Guards Fires Warning Shot Against Turkish Freighter


Hellenic Coast Guard. Photo: Eurokinissi/Giorgos Kontarinis, File

ATHENS - Greece's Coast Guard fired a warning shot against a Turkey-flagged freighter sailing in Greek territorial waters near Rhodes on Monday, after the latter refused to stop for an inspection, Athens Macedonian News Agency says.

According to information, the warning shot was fired in a manner that did't risk injuring the crew. The freighter is reportedly called "ACT" and sources say there was evidence it was carrying suspicious cargo. Its captain was asked by the Coast Guard to lead the ship to the port of Rhodes but he refused, increased the ship's speed and entered Turkish territorial waters.

The Greek Coast Guard has informed its Turkish counterpart about the incident, ANA reports.

Reporting from Ankara, Associated Press said that the Turkey's state-run news agency says the country dispatched three boats to the Aegean Sea after Greek coast guards fired on a Turkish freighter ship near the Greek island of Rhodes.

The freighter's captain told Turkish media on Monday that the Greek coast guards approached his vessel, the ACT, in international waters, demanded that it sail to a port in Rhodes and fired on it when he refused. He said there were 16 bullet holes but the vessel was not in danger of sinking.

The Greek Coast Guard said it tried to stop the vessel following reports that it was carrying narcotics. It said the ship was in Greek waters.

Anadolu Agency said the Turkish coast guard dispatched two boats while the navy sent an assault boat to the region.