Türkiye files protest with Greece, US over armament of Aegean islands

Türkiye files protest with Greece, US over armament of Aegean islands

Türkiye files protest with Greece, US over armament of Aegean islands

The United States and Greek ambassadors to Ankara were summoned to the foreign ministry in a protest against the deployment of U.S.-made armored military vehicles on two Aegean islands, daily Hürriyet reported on Sept. 27.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry told the Greek envoy that Athens should “stop violations” and respect the non-military status the islands were assigned by international law.

In a note to the U.S. embassy in Ankara, Ankara told Washington that its “weapons should not be used in breach” of the islands’ agreed status.

Turkish military recorded images showing ships loaded with U.S. armored vehicles docking at two Greek islands, Lesbos and Samos, on Sept. 18 and Sept. 21, a move which Ankara describes as a violation of international agreements.

The armored vehicles were among those sent by the U.S. to the Port of Alexandroupolis (Dedeağaç) of Greece, according to the Turkish sources.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan separately accused Greece of staging “provocations” and playing “perilous games.” Türkiye will protect its rights and interests against Greece “using all means” of the country, he said.

“While endeavoring sincerely to end wars, crises and tensions in the world, we closely follow our neighbor Greece’s policies full of provocation,” Erdoğan said on Sept. 26 at a press conference after the cabinet meeting.

Greece cannot be Türkiye’s equivalent or counterpart in political, military and economic terms, the president said.

“We are well aware that the real intentions of those who provoke and unleash Greek politicians against us are to hinder our program of building up a great and powerful Türkiye by distracting our country’s time, energy and attention,” he said.

Erdoğan warned that it was a “dangerous game both for Greek politicians, the Greek state and the Greek people and for those who use them as a puppet.”

Underscoring that the economic and political engagements, the price of which he noted will definitely be paid, actually threaten the Greek people, not Türkiye, Erdoğan said: “As Türkiye we saw this movie in the past, closed the issue and drew ourselves a new path. Now, we as a neighbor are sincerely saddened that Greece is blatantly being dragged into a similar disaster.”

Neither those military buildups nor those political or economic supports are enough to elevate Greece to the level of Türkiye, he emphasized. “However, these wrong steps are sufficient to drag Greece into a quagmire in every sense,” he said.

“Lastly, it should be known well that we will never hesitate to use all the means in hand and defend our country’s rights and interests against Greece if need be. Yet, let me clearly point out that we will by no means compromise a bit our own political and economic goals while doing this,” the president added.

Ankara slams German official over insulting Erdoğan

Meanwhile, Ankara has slammed a senior German official’s insulting remarks against President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Vice Parliament Speaker of Germany’s Bundestag, Wolfgang Kubicki insulted President Erdoğan at an election campaign over the weekend in Lower Saxony, the Foreign Ministry’s Spokesman Tanju Bilgiç said in a written statement on Sept. 27.

“We are strongly condemning the vituperative remarks by Wolfgang Kubicki, the vice parliament speaker of Germany’s Federal Parliament, against our president in a statement at an election campaign in Lower Saxony,” Bilgiç said.

Kubicki’s unacceptable and irresponsible statements are against political ethics and does not suit with his position as the vice parliament speaker, he stated, “These indecent statements give an idea of Kubicki’s political and moral level and reveal his banality.” Bilgiç also informed that Ankara’s reaction was conveyed to German Ambassador Jürgen Schulz who was invited to the Foreign Ministry.