Greek harassment of Turkish boat ‘prevented’
The sailing boat “Good Day Sunshine,” which participated in the 51st Naval Forces Cup International Open Sea Yacht Race in the Bodrum district of the southwestern Muğla province, was harassed for 30 minutes by a Greek Coast Guard boat on July 25.
A Turkish Coast Guard Boat noticed the harassment and made a call to those on the boat with the radio announcement, “Don’t change your route.”
The Turkish Coast Guard team, which protected the sailing boat, then drove the Greek forces away from the region with its maneuvers.
The sailing boat had just reached the shores of Bodrum around 11:00 a.m. on July 25 after a 72-hour journey with its nine person crew.
Moments of fear were felt as the captain of the boat, Murat Tan, and his entourage tried to hold the broken sailboat with the emergency rudder.
According to Murat Tan, the 51st Naval Forces Cup International Open Sea Yacht Race is very important and the most prestigious and longest race.
“We pass a certain distance every year and reach here. The races started in Istanbul, and we encountered problems along the way,” said Tan.
“The Greek Coast Guard harassed us. Our Turkish Coast Guard Boat quickly came to our aid when it saw them approaching. We are sailboats, we are at sea for the race. We have students on the boat, they competed with us as we are a sailing school,” he added.
“I was terrified to experience Greek harassment. They made dangerous moves on us very quickly,” said İsmail Kaan Bozkurt, one of the people in the sailing boat.
The statement made by the Coast Guard about the incident, said “The Greek Coast Guard element, attempted to harass a sailing boat participating in the Naval Forces Cup Open Sea Yacht Race, 3.8 nautical miles [approximately 7 kilometers] southwest of Bulamaç Island on July 25, 2022, at 08:50.”
“It was blocked and removed from the area with the prevention maneuvers performed by our Coast Guard Boat,” they added.
The 51st Naval Forces Cup International Offshore Yacht Race started on July 22 from the Çengelköy neighborhood in Istanbul province. There were 30 boats, four of which are foreign, participating in the race.
The race will end in the Turgutreis town of Muğla’s Bodrum district.