Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has openly threatened Greece and Cyprus over the gas drill and the Greek islets. Addressing lawmakers of his own party at the Palriament in Ankara, he said Greece and Cyprus should not “overstep the mark” in the eastern Mediterranean Sea and the Aegean Sea as such moves disregard the rights of Turkey and of Turkish Cypriots.
“Opportunistic attempts concerning gas exploration off Cyprus and concerning Aegean islets are not escaping our attentions,” Erdogan said. “We are warning those who step out of line with miscalculations in Cyprus and the Aegean.”
“Turkish warships are monitoring the developments in the area,” he added “their swagger is until they see our ships, our army and our airplanes.”
Erdogan’s warning on Tuesday comes just hours after a Turkish Coast Guard vessel rammed the patrol boat of the Greek Coast Guard in the sea area close to the islet of Imia, which has been cause for tensions between the two neighboring countries since 1996.
At the same time, Turkish warships continued to impede a rig from reaching a location off Cyprus where Italian energy company ENI is scheduled to drill for gas.