Turkish research ship TCG Crane is being harassed by the Greek military, alleges the Turkish Government.
According to the Turkish government, the research vessel transiting in the Aegean Sea has been intimidated by the Greek military. To counter this the Turkish military intervened as 4 Greek F-16 fighter jets were harassing the vessel near the Greek Island of Lemnos.
One of the fighters fired a flare to hamper the Turkish radar lying 2 nautical miles away.
Regular Act of Harassment
Informing about the retaliation by the Turkish military, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said it was a regular act of harassment by neighbors.
“We gave the necessary response in line with rules”, he said.
Turkey Breaking the Spirit of Dialogue
The Turkish vessel is deployed in the Aegean Sea for hydrographic surveying which will be on till March 2nd. Greece alleges this survey runs against the spirit of dialogue between the 2 neighbouring nations. This will hamper Turkey’s effort to improve EU relations.
Akar reaffirmed that the vessel was strictly meant for scientific research regarding the earthquakes that the region faces.
At Loggerhead Over Energy Rights
This comes at a time, when Greece and Turkey resumed talks following their NATO principles. The 2 countries are NATO allies.
The talks seek to resolve long standing issues like energy rights in the region. The talks resumed when Greek and Turkish officials sat to chalk out a plan in Istanbul on 25th January after 5 years of conflict. The 2 nations were at loggerheads over energy resources in the Mediterranean.