HA!HA!HA! I always thought Greece had a direct border to Turkey. But a Turkish minister comes to teach me better! “Greece is 900 km away from Akkuyu” claimed Taner Yildiz, Turkey’s Minister of Energy & Natural Resources, in an effort to persuade Athens and the European Union, they should not be concerned about the construction of a nuclear plant in Akkuyu by Mersin in Southwest Turkey. I am sure the Minister assumes that a nuclear cloud takes a small picturesque boat from Akkuyu/Mersin, makes a stopover to Antalya port and continues slowly slowly its picturesque Blue Cruise sailing to Karpathos, Kastellorizo, Rhodes and Crete. Given the time the boat would need to make this tour, it is certainly equivalent to 900km…
Furthermore with this statement, the Minister implies and eliminates a plethora of Greek islands and claims to consider Greek capital ”Athens” as the border to Turkey. Pure geographic ignorance or political intention? A slip of tongue? Sure not! Rather a Freudian slip… I put a big questionmark here as Ankara is keen to dispute the maritime area in the southeast borders of Greece.
A comparison: Mersin – Athens : 983 km, Mersin – Rhodes 370 km, Mersin – Crete 494 km
Here is an excerpt from the news as transmitted by Anatolian news Agency:
Turkish Minister of Energy & Natural Resources Taner Yildiz said on Wednesday that stance of the European Union (EU) in putting forth criteria regarding nuclear power plants was not meaningful in political sense as it did not open chapter heading on energy with non-technical reasons.
Asked to comment on an EU letter requesting implementation of EU criteria on nuclear power plants, Yildiz said he would talk to European Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger on the matter.
When reminded that Greece complained to EU about the nuclear power plant that would be constructed in Akkuyu, Yildiz said the complaint was not realistic. He said Akkuyu was 900 km away to Greece, however, there are nuclear power plants in EU member countries which are 500-600 km away to Greece. (source: Anatolian News Agency via Wordlbulletin and Hurriyet Daily News)
Not to mention the distance to Cyprus, an EU member, that also complained about the nuclear plant at Akkyuy. But with Cyprus (150 km away) Taner Yildiz does really have a problem…