NewsWorldGreek Premier says Turkey's position on Aegean islands is "absurd"

Greek Premier says Turkey’s position on Aegean islands is “absurd”

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has said Turkey’s position that questions Greece‘s sovereignty over its Aegean islands is “absurd,” rendering any talks between the two countries difficult.

“Turkey’s objections, as they were phrased in the latest letters to the United Nations, are absolutely absurd as they raise questions about Greece‘s sovereignty over its islands,” Mitsotakis said in an interview broadcast by state television ERT late on Tuesday.

“We cannot have any discussion over the absurd.”

At the same time, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has urged Greece and Turkey to resolve their disagreements over the Aegean Sea.

“Diverse views and debate are an essential part of our democracies,” the head of the transatlantic military alliance told Greek news agency ANA.

But, he said, “we urge Greece and Turkey to solve their differences in the Aegean in a spirit of trust and Allied solidarity”.

“That means restraint and moderation, and refraining from any actions or rhetoric that could escalate the situation”.

Stoltenberg’s comments came two weeks after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared he was ending regular high-level meetings with Greek leaders intended to foster cooperation between the two countries.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis responded that he would not engage in a “ping-pong” of personal insults with Erdogan.

Athens also accuses Ankara of overflying Greek islands.

Turkey, for its part, alleges that Greece is stationing troops on islands in the Aegean in violation of peace treaties signed after the First and Second World Wars.

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