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Irked by Turkey, Greece Not Invited to German Meeting Over Libya

Αssociated Press

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias talks to the media during a press conference after a meeting with his counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Athens, Monday, May 31, 2021. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

ΑΤΗΕΝS -- Germany, which blocked any idea of sanctions for Turkish provocations against Greece in Aegean and East Mediterranean, has left Greece out of a meeting over Libya – which made a deal with Turkey claiming waters around Greek islands.

That peeved Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias who said Greece should have been invited to the second Berlin Conference on Libya on June 23, even as he and the Greek government are trying to deal with Turkey's plans to hunt for energy around Greek waters.

“Greece has a direct line of communication with Libya. Despite this we are extremely disappointed that Germany, obsessively sticking to its strategy, did not invite us yet again to the Libya summit,” he tweeted.

Speaking at the International Conference of Cultural Heritage, Dendias stressed that the priority of the summit must be the immediate departure of all foreign troops and mercenaries from Libya, said Kathimerini.

That came after he and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had a cordial meeting in Athens after a confrontation in a previous affair in Ankara when Dendias lashed out at Turkey in a news conference.

But while the talks in Greece were calmer,  Dendias said Greece won't be misled by Turkey's alternating between diplomacy and belligerence said warning flags are always up.

“We should not be misled by the fact that the atmosphere was different in the last meeting with Cavusoglu,” said Dendias, reported Kathimerini.

Greece, he said, will not discuss the expansion of its territorial waters with Turkey, which has made claims on them under the United Nations Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that Turkey doesn't recognize unless invoking to its advantage.

“Under the Law of the Sea and UNCLOS, the extension of territorial waters to 12 miles is our national sovereign right,” Dendias stressed.

“Turkey has a particular perception of things. First, it has not signed onto UNCLOS. This is wrong in my opinion, but this is the Turkish position. Secondly, it has issued a casus belli against Greece, which is completely unacceptable,” he added, referring to a call for war that Turkey uses from time to time.