ATHENS — The new discussion in the Foreign Affairs Council on the list of sanctions against Turkey will take place in August and not in September, "so that we can reach a draft plan of European reactions in the case of Turkish delinquency as soon as possible," Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said late on Tuesday in an interview with Star TV.
Dendias noted that during the EU foreign ministers' meeting he had warned his counterparts that if a problem with Turkey should arise in the meantime he will request an extraordinary Council in the summer.
In particular, he said that Greece asked the Foreign Affairs Council to prepare a list of specific sanctions. "That is, harsh sanctions that create a huge problem for the Turkish economy. We should have this list so that we are ready. Additionally, Turkey will know where it is going and we will have made our intentions clear. Greek territory is also European territory and the EU must defend its own territory," he explained.
Asked to give examples of sanctions that could be imposed, the foreign minister said these might include a note on tourism, matters relating to banking and guarantees in cases of exports or imports. He further stressed that the EU is Turkey's largest trading partner and that Europe can create a huge problem for the Turkish economy if it chooses. "The EU is a global superpower, provided it wants to use this enormous potential. And I imagine that there will not be any state that does not want to use the Union's capabilities to defend a member-state that is under attack from another country."