Berlin called on Ankara to respect the sovereignty of the Greek islands

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Today, Friday, German Foreign Minister Annaline Bierbock stressed that the Aegean islands claimed by Turkey are Greek islands and called on Ankara to respect Athens’ sovereignty hours before her planned visit to Turkey .

Burbock, along with his Greek counterpart Nikos Dendias, said on the second day of his visit to the Greek capital: “The Greek islands of Lesvos, Chios, Rhodes and many other islands are Greek lands, and no one has the right to doubt that.”

Greece and Turkey, bordering countries and members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, have historically clashed over air and sea space in the Aegean Sea, where tensions have recently increased following the discovery of rich gas reserves.

In recent months, Ankara has threatened to challenge Greek sovereignty over its Aegean islands if it continues to deploy forces there.

Beerbock stressed that the German government “leaves no doubt about our solidarity with Greece”, calling for dialogue between the two neighboring countries and “respect for the sovereignty of each of them”.

“It is clear to me that we must resolve differences between NATO partners through dialogue,” said Beerbock, who is due in Turkey on Friday afternoon for a two-day visit.

She added at a joint press conference that “the differences within the alliance are exactly what Russian President Vladimir Putin wants.”

For his part, the Greek Foreign Minister criticized the expected delivery of German submarines to Turkey.

After the meeting with his German counterpart, Dendias said: “With these submarines, there is a great danger that the balance of power in the eastern Mediterranean will be upset” and that the balance will tip “in favor of a country which, despite joining NATO, (threatened) against Greece.

Dendias wrote to former German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas in 2020 to prevent the sale of submarines, frigates and planes to Turkey.

Ankara has entered into a joint venture with the German company ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems to build six submarines in Turkey. Turkey remains keen to buy new F-16 fighter jets from the United States and accuses the Greek-American lobby in Washington of trying to block the deal.

Athens, for its part, recently signed a multi-billion dollar agreement with France for the purchase of Rafale fighter jets and Pilara-class frigates and is preparing to order at least one squadron of F-fighters soon. 35 Americans.

As part of the German reparations case, Nikos Dendias recalled that Athens retains its claims for compensation for the period of German occupation from 1941 to 1944. But Annalena Beerbock confirmed Berlin’s position, which sees no legal basis for such requests.

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