Tsipras shows support to coastguard with visit to Ministry of Shipping

15 February 2018
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After meeting with the men and women of the coastguard boat “Gavdos”, which was involved in Monday’s incident with the Turkish warships near Imia, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras accused Turkey of endangering the lives of people.

“The job, however, of the Greek coastguard is rescuing live not endangering them”, he said. The Greek PM dubbed the provocation by Turkey as unacceptable.

In a show of support to the Greek coastguard, which is playing a crucial role in safeguarding the Greek sea line borders, Greek PM Alexis Tsipras visited arrived shortly after 10 am in the Ministry of Shipping and Island Police a little after 10 in the morning on Thursday.

Mr Tsipras wanted to send a message to Ankara that the Greek government considers the illegal claims over Imia a very serious matter and fully supports the presence of Greek naval forces in the region.

“You displayed calmness, and calmness is bravery”, he told the crew of coastguard boat “Gavdos”, which was involved in the incident near Imia on Monday when Turkish warships attempted to ram and sink it.

One of the members of the 27 strong crew of men and women described the shocking moments of the attack by the Turkish boats.

Two days after his Mr Tsipras’s phone contact with his Turkish counterpart Yildirim, the government is hoping for a steady de-escalation of tensions. Athens remains cautious about the intentions of Turkey following the recent escalation in the Aegean Sea.

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