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Greek Military Chief Says Turkey Risking Sea Battle With Provocations

Ευρωκίνηση

Hellenic National Defence General Staff (HNDS) chief general Konstantinos Floros. (Photo by Eurokinissi)

ATHENS -- With tensions already running high, Hellenic National Defense General Staff (GEETHA), Chief Konstantinos Floros warned shooting could break out over Turkey's constant claims of Greek waters and raising provocations in the Aegean and East Mediterranean.

Floros said an “accident,” could occur between the rival military and naval forces, without indicating whether it could come from an itchy trigger finger or a vessel captain beginning an altercation.

In comments during a webinar organized by the American Hellenic Institute Foundation (AHIF) Floros said that the potential for a military accident is “serious,” given Turkey’s recent actions in the Aegean, adding that this would have dire consequences, the GEETHA website reported, said Kathimerini.

He stressed the strategic importance of the Eastern Mediterranean for United States, Russia, NATO and the European Union and pointed out Turkey's constant violations of Greek airspace and waters, with NATO – to which both belong – keeping hands off.

Floros also thanked the president of the American Hellenic Institute, Nick Larigakis, for the AHI’s role in strengthening reek-American relations and lauded the Greek-American Strategic Dialogue, the paper said.

Turkey is planning to drill for energy off Crete under a maritime deal with Libya no other country recognizes, as it is already doing in Cypriot sovereign waters with the EU issuing only soft sanctions, afraid to confront Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Outside the seas, Floros also noted Turkey trying to push migrants across the northern land border along the Evros River as adding to the tensions between the countries that remain taut.