Tusk expresses EU concerns to Erdogan over incidents in Aegean, east Med and fate of 2 Greek servicemen

27 March 2018
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European Council President Donald Tusk told reporters on Monday evening, after the conclusion of a closely watched EU-Turkey summit in the Bulgarian port city of Varna, that he expressed his concerns to the Turkish side over recent actions by the Turkish military in the eastern Aegean and eastern Mediterranean.

He also cited the issue of two Greek servicemen still being held in pre-trial detention in Turkey after allegedly straying into Turkish territory earlier this month.

Tusk was referring to what Athens and Nicosia charge is stepped up military provocations, such as a Turkish warship ramming a Greek coast guard vessel, disputing Greek sovereignty of several isles and even preventing an Italian drill ship from hydrocarbon exploration in Cyprus’ EEZ.

Standing besides Tusk was Turkey’s increasingly authoritarian President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, along with EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and the summit’s host, Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov.

Tusk, in fact, again expressed the Union’s solidarity with the Republic of Cyprus and its right to exploit its natural resources within its EEZ.

On his part, Juncker called on Turkey to re-examine the issue of the two servicemen, expressing a hope that the pair will be returned to Greece by Easter.

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