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Politics

Report Says Turkey, Erdogan Want to Rule East Mediterranean

ATHENS – Turkey is pursuing a carefully-crafted strategy of hegemony designed to take control over the seas and East Mediterranean under a so-called Blue Homeland doctrine claiming areas around Greek islands, a report analyzing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s moves said.

That was released by Alexandros Diakopoulos, former National Security Advisor for Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, and Nikos Stournaras, Research Assistant at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP) said Kathimerini of the findings as tensions rise.

With Erdogan upping his belligerence and indicating Turkey would consider use of military force unless Greece takes troops off Aegean islands near his country’s coast, the report outlined his methodology.

“It is through this doctrine that Ankara seeks to dominate the Eastern Mediterranean, the mandatory point of passage for trade routes linking Europe to the Indian Ocean and, by extension, the markets of Southeast Asia,” states the report, adding that “by controlling the sea routes from the Black Sea and the Suez Canal to the Central Mediterranean, Turkey would control the major eastern transit routes to Europe and become the undisputable trans-regional power,” it stated.

“Understanding the “Blue Homeland” as the heart of Turkey’s quest for strategic autonomy explains why Ankara remains an intransigently belligerent actor in the Eastern Mediterranean,” it added.

The work looked at Turkey’s relations with NATO, Russia, and China, as well as its regional and peripheral neighbors, analyzing the Blue Homeland’ doctrine and Turkish efforts to rule the East Mediterranean.

Erdogan pulled away from the Greek island of Kastellorizo an energy research vessel and warships after the European Union – pushed by Prime Mniniter Kyriakos Mitsotakis – said it would consider sanctions.

But he said he would send them back in again in a challenge to Greece’s sovereignty, has repeatedly had F-16 fighter jets violate Greek airspace and warned it would be a cause for war if Greece doubles its maritime boundaries to 12 miles.

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