Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Turkey urges Greece to decrease tension in Aegean Sea

Turkey urges Greece to decrease tension in Aegean Sea

"The Aegean Sea should not become a place of conflict, and Turkey and Greece should strive for peace and stability in this region", Yildirim said.

Turkey and Greece discussed the incident in the Aegean Sea, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said before the visit to Belarus, Turkish media reported on Feb.14.

Speaking at a news conference, following the NATO Defense Ministers meeting in Brussels, Jens Stoltenberg said: "I welcome the fact the two prime ministers spoke on the phone and I urge for talks to continue in order to avoid such incidents in the future, reduce tensions and avoid new escalation".

Monday (February 12) saw another clash when a Turkish coast guard vessel rammed a Greek boat in the vicinity. The coast guard says nobody was injured, although the Greek vessel suffered damage to the stern where the Turkish boat hit it with its bows.

It is believed that the migrants, including 36 Syrians and eight Eritreans, were trying to reach a Greek island, said the coast guard, who said he started a rescue operation after receiving a message asking for help from the boat.

Many in Turkey dispute Greek ownership of the Aegean islets near Turkey's coastline. "We agreed with Greece to ease the tensions and keep the line of communication open via political and diplomatic channels as part of a mutual understanding".

Turkey and Greece, NATO allies, have been at odds over a host of issues from ethnically split Cyprus to sovereignty over airspace and overflights.

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