German conservative newspaper Die Welt reported that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wanted to provoke a military incident with Greece in the Eastern Mediterranean in order to survive politically.
In a report entitled “Erdogan’s calculated war,” the news paper said that “if it depended on the Turkish President, his navy would have sunk a Greek ship in the Mediterranean a long time ago.”
Citing Turkish military sources, Die Welt wrote that Erdogan had asked Turkey generals a few days ago to sink a Greek ship and that they should do so securing that no one is killed in the process.
When the generals refused, someone else suggested shooting down a Greek fighter, and the pilot could use the launch pad to save himself. But Turkish generals again refused.
Turkish and Greek Navy ships have been at standoff in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea since Ankara sent seismic vessel Oruc Reis for hydrocarbon research in the Greek continental shelf beginning of August. Fighter jests of the two countries are often engaged in “dog fights” over the Aegean Sea because Turkey sends its F-16s to violate Greek air space.
On Wednesday, the Turkish Foreign Ministry dismissed the report saying that “the media report published by Die Welt referring to Turkey regarding the Eastern Mediterranean is completely fabricated.“