Greece accuses Turkey of 'provocations' in the Aegean

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Apr 02, 2021, 04.40 PM(IST)

File Photo: Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan leaves after the Global Refugee Forum at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland Photograph:( Reuters )

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Greece and Turkey have been at loggerheads with each other for some time over maritime issues

Greece in Friday accused Turkey of trying to "provoke an escalation" in the Aegean. It alleged that Turkey was trying "dangerous" manoeuvres and assistance to migrants that was illegal.

"This morning the Hellenic Coastguard reported multiple incidents of the Turkish Coastguard and Navy accompanying flimsy migrant boats to the border of Europe in an effort to provoke an escalation with Greece," the migration ministry said in a statement.

Earlier, Greek coastguard announced that its patrol boat near Lesbos island had been "harassed" by a Turkish vessels with "dangerous manoeuvres".

It released a video allegedly showing a Turkish coastguard vessel speeding closely past the Greek vessel and rocking it with waves.

The Greek coastguard added that in two incidents, Turkish patrol boats had allegedly tried to assist migrant dinghies in entering Greek waters.

In one of the alleged incidents, two Turkish patrol boats "tried to push" a migrant dinghy into Greek waters, the Greek coastguard said. 

Athens wants Ankara to better police migration routes and take back hundreds of asylum seekers found ineligible for refugee protection.

It has repeatedly asked Turkey to take back nearly 1,500 migrants whose asylum requests have been rejected.

(With agency inputs)

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