Turkey will not remain silent to Greek military acts on islands: Erdoğan
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Feb. 15 warned against attempts by Greece for the armament of the Aegean islands.
“It is not possible for us to remain silent about the military activities carried out in violation of the agreements on the islands with disarmed status,” Erdoğan told journalists traveling with him from the United Arab Emirates to Turkey.
He recalled that Ankara applied to the United Nations to present its rejection against Greek activities on the islands.
“However, if Greece continues this, of course, we will make this warning at the highest level, whatever is necessary. Because, as you know, the issue of islands is always controversial,” he stated.
“They may compel us to raise these controversial issues. For this reason, my minister gave them a low-level warning so that they should not force us to open these issues for discussion,” he said.
He criticized the attitude of Greece on the incident in which 19 migrants froze to death in early February.
Elaborating on the Ukrainian crisis, Erdoğan said Turkey continues to demarche to calm down the strain between Moscow and Kiev.
“We sincerely try to fulfill our responsibility for the resolution of the crisis between Ukraine and Russia through diplomatic and peaceful means,” he stated.
“We are in close dialogue and cooperation with both Mr. [Vladimir] Putin and Mr. [Volodymyr] Zelenskyy. I think this is an important opportunity that can be used to lower tension,” Erdoğan stated.
Turkey would not refrain from its efforts for the stability of Libya, Erdoğan said while referring to the recent political dispute after the elections were postponed in the north African country.
“Just as we have given all kinds of support to Libya from the beginning, we will try to give our best support in the next process,” he said.
“We want such an election to be held so that the Libyan people will have the form of government they really want and desire. We are currently in search of this,” Erdoğan stated.
In a temporary administration approach, a government with a one-and-a-half-year term is on the agenda but Ankara does not embrace this idea, he noted. “I do not find such an approach right for Libya since a strong administration is required for the country,” he added.
Elaborating on his visit to the UAE, the president said they had exchanged views on regional and international issues, as well as underlined Turkey’s support for the security and stability of the Gulf country.
“During our meetings, we also exchanged views on regional and international issues. At this point, we underlined our support for the security and stability of the United Arab Emirates. We emphasized that we do not see the security of the Gulf area as separate from our own security,” he said.
With the letter of intent signed in the field of the defense industry, the two countries reached a consensus to coordinate the joint steps to be taken in the coming period, he said. With the memorandum of understanding signed in the fields of land and sea transportation, logistics costs were reduced, while Turkey and the UAE agreed to start negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement soon.
“In the coming period, they want to contribute to big projects, our traditional companies as well as our start-up companies, incubation centers and technoparks as investors,” he stated.