The Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu made a reference to the incident between the Turkish frigate “Kemal Reis” and the the Greek frigate “Lemnos” and used it to directly threaten Greece with military action in the presence of the German Foreign Minister Haiko Maas.
The German Foreign Minister is visiting Turkey after his visit to Greece in an attempt to de-escalate tensions between the two countries. His initiative, however, does not seem to work out well as the Mr. Cavusoglu practically ignored his appeals for de-escalation with the direct threat that, “if Greece takes the wrong steps, we will not have an accident, we will do what is necessary”.
The Turkish Minister entombed the German reconciliation effort by adding, “we are ready for dialogue, but do not bring us Greek terms and conditions”.
But the Turkish Foreign Minister did not stop there. He went on with another provocation in the presence of his German counterpart as he spoke of a “Turkish” minority in the Greek Thrace and described Greece and Cyprus as “spoiled” by the EU.
During the joint press conference, Mevlut Cavusoglu attacked Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, saying “that with these statements he made (after today’s meeting with Maas) he showed his level” and accused Greece of “violating the International Law in the Eastern Mediterranean”.
Mr. Cavusoglu continued in the same provocative style, attacking France as well. “Do not let Greece be fooled by countries trying to throw it in front of the Turkish navy”, he said.
After all that, the Turkish Foreign Minister saw it fit to thank the German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the German Foreign Minister Haiko Maas twice for their efforts to bring together the two countries…
The German Foreign Minister on his behalf stressed that the tense situation in the Eastern Mediterranean is not in the interest of either Turkey, Greece or the EU.“I remain convinced that if both sides start direct talks with sincere intentions, we can find a solution that is acceptable to both sides,” he added.