BRUSSELS – After backing away from sanctions, the European Union is pressing Turkey to stop talking tough against Turkey, urging diplomacy that has failed and saying Greece’s sovereignty has to be respected.
That came from the EU Commission’s lead spokesman for foreign affairs, Peter Stano, who said that Turkey’s actions are detrimental to good neighborly relations, speaking delicately.
He said Turkey should stop violating Greek airspace and waters although the bloc has no military and no practical way of making President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has snubbed his nose at the EU, of ceasing belligerence.
Greece’s state-run Athens-Macedonian News Agency (AMNA) reported that he said the EU and its member states expect Turkey to behave but stopped short of saying what any consequences would be.
As has Greece, he said that differences between the countries have to be resolved peacefully with respect for international law and treates that Turkey doesn’t accept unless invoking to its advantage.
Turkey demanded that Greece take troops off Aegean islands near Turkey’s coast, Erdogan hinting that he would use force otherwise, and as he plans to send an energy research vessel and warships off Greek islands.
After meeting with Erdogan’s spokesman Ibrahim Kalin – it wasn’t said why he didn’t meet the President US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said Turkey and Greece have to dial down the tension.
The paper said, “The need for dialogue and diplomacy to resolve disagreements in the Aegean” was among the issues discussed at a meeting of senior officials from Germany, the United States, Britain, France and Turkey in Berlin.