Athens condemns Turkey-Libya deal, calls Turkish ambassador

Athens on Thursday condemned a decision by Turkey and Libya delineating maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean with the Greek Foreign Ministry summoning Turkish Ambassador Burak Ozugergin.

“The signing by Turkey and Libya of a memorandum of understanding cannot violate the sovereign rights of third countries,” ministry spokesman Alexandros Gennimatas said in a statement.

“Such an action would be a flagrant violation of the International Law of the Sea and would produce no legal effect,” he said, adding that such a move would also “not be consistent with the principle of good neighborliness, which should govern relations between neighboring states.”

Earlier in the day, Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias described the agreement asurkey “completely unacceptable” and “beyond all reason.”

“Such an effort shows a complete lack of geographic knowledge, because it obviously ignores something that I think everyone can see; that between these two countries lies the large geographical volume of Crete,” Dendias told journalists at a joint press conference with visiting Dutch counterpart Stef Blok.

“Therefore, I think that any such effort verges on the ridiculous,” he continued, adding that Greece is ready to send an ambassador to Libya when conditions allow it.

Libya’s neighbor Egypt meanwhile dismissed the deal as “illegal.”

The development was expected to fuel tensions are between Athens and Ankara because of Turkish which are already high due to Turkey’s hydrocarbons exploration in the eastern Mediterranean off the coast of Cyprus.


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