Less than 48 hours after the visit of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Greece and Ankara made new claims about the islets in the Aegean Sea. “The status of 132 islets in the Aegean is gray,” Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said and added that “The Aegean Sea is not Greek.”
During a debate in the Turkish Parliament, Yildirim was responding to opposition leader, Kemalist CHP Kemal Kilincaroglu who accused Erdogan for having given to Greeks “18 Aegean islands”. CHP leader criticized the Turkish President for not raising the issue during his visit to Athens.
“We did not give away a single stone in the years we are in power,” Yildirim responded and then he
“There is a grey status regarding the 132 islets in the Aegean. We will do everything in our power to ensure that Turkey’s rights and interests are not compromised even at a minimum. Turkey is not a country that leaves something unanswered, everybody knows that,” Yildirim raved.
He claimed further that the Aegean Sea was “in question” and that “it is neither Greek nor Turkish lake”.
Yildirim recalled Turkish President Suleyman Demirel who had claimed in 1998 that “the status of 132 islets in the Aegean was disputed as it was not settled in the Lausanne Treaty”. The issue will remain under dispute, the Turkish prime minister claimed.
Last February, Yildirim claimed the status of 130 islets and rocks in the Aegean was in dispute as they were under the illegal occupation of Greece. Apparently two more islets or rocks popped up in the Aegean and the Turkish claim expanded to 132.
In October 2016, the Turkish claim was “16 islands in the Aegean“, a month later, their number rose to 18.
So, Turkey claims 132 uninhabited islets and rocks and 18 inhabited islands?
Not even Ankara knows.
PS I’ma afraid with this, Turkey might soon claim that the whole territory of Greece was still part of the neo-Ottoman little ’empire’ of the Sultan in Ankara.