We will use your email address only for sending you newsletters. Please see our Privacy Notice for details of your data protection rights.
A bitter dispute over maritime exploration rights has sparked fears of conflict between the neighbouring countries and Athens has now warned Germany its arms exports were being used to destabilise the whole region. German arms manufacturers have been exporting submarines to Turkey since 2002 with Berlin’s approval.
Greece is threatened by German weapons in the hands of Turkey
Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said: “Greece is threatened by German weapons in the hands of Turkey.
“Don’t give Turkey something that can destabilise the entire eastern Mediterranean.”
German MP Sevim Dağdelen, a foreign policy expert for the Left Party, branded the continued weapons exports “unbearable” and hit out at Angela Merkel and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.
She said: “Anyone who, like Chancellor Merkel and Foreign Minister Maas, continues to deliver weapons to Turkey should no longer use the word European solidarity.”
Since 2002, the German government has approved arms exports to Turkey worth £470m which can be used for the construction, armament or technical equipment of warships.
Berlin has banned the export of weapons which could be used by Turkish forces in the Syrian conflict but the delivery of goods for the “maritime sector” is still approved.
A simmering territorial dispute boiled over in August when the Turkish survey vessel Oruc Reis entered disputed waters in the Mediterranean escorted by warships.
Tensions have been running high ever since and last month the Greek Armed Forces were put on “full alert” to stand against “provocative” Turkish movements in the eastern Mediterranean region.
The Greek Embassy in London launched an attack over what it claims was “persistence in provocative and delinquent behaviour” by Turkey.
It claimed Turkey had “ignored international law” and was “seeking to destabilise the region”.
Earlier, Mr Dendias accused Turkey of “trying to destroy any prospect of constructive dialogue by illegally reserving areas within the Greek continental shelf for illegal seismic surveys or by provoking with the illegal visit of the Turkish vice president to occupied Varosha”.
Ankara has repeatedly rejected Greece’s claims.
The Turkish embassy in London told Express.co.uk: “Turkey continues its activities in the region within the framework of its rights stemming from international law.
“Unfortunately, Greece has abused twice the window of opportunity for diplomacy. She has refrained from engaging in a sincere and meaningful dialogue with Turkey.
“Greece preferred to maintain her confrontational position by conducting various military exercises and firing activities in and around the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as the Aegean Sea, violating the demilitarised status of the Eastern Aegean islands which was established with international treaties.
Turkey plans fiery Mediterranean exercise on symbolic Greek holiday [SPOTLIGHT]
Mediterranean war threat: Erdogan sends ship BACK to disputed region[FOCUS]
EU turning blind eye to Turkey incursion ‘walking on European territory[ANALYSIS]
“Turkey is ready to cooperate with Greece and to solve the issues through dialogue.
“On the other hand, Turkey has also offered her helping hand to Greece aftermath of the earthquake on October 30.
“This offer was extended both by President Erdogan and Foreign Minister Cavusoglu to their Greek counterparts on the very same day.”
(Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg)
Source: Read Full Article