Greece warned over flag raising on Aegean islet

Elias Hubbard
April 17, 2018

Greek government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said on Monday that there was no evidence of any "violation of Greek territory" following claims by Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim that the Turkish coast guard took down Greek flag from an Aegean islet, Ekathimerini reports.

"We advise Greece to remain within the context of neighbourhood law and avoid provocations that would increase tensions, " Yildirim told newsmen while attending a panel in Istanbul. According to Yildirim, the incident was similar to one in 1996 when the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies went to war over the uninhabited Imia islets - Kardak in Turkish - which both Turkey and Greece claim.

A decades-long dispute between Turkey and Greece over the uninhabited Aegean islets brought the two countries to the brink of an armed conflict in 1996.

Asked about the incident during a joint news conference with visiting the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation chief, Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu accused Greece's defense minister - the outspoken leader of Greece's nationalist party - of raising tensions in the Aegean Sea.

"I think Mr Yildirim should be more careful", Tzanakopoulos said.

Another official said that it wasn't clear whether the three men raised the flag on the islet, took a photo and took it away with them or left it behind.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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