Greece Calls on Turkey to ”Learn to Respect International Law”



The Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens. File photo

Alexandros Gennimatas, the spokesperson of the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, made a statement on Saturday afternoon, answering to the Turkish Defense Minister’s remarks about the islands of the Aegean Sea.

Gennimatas called Turkey to ”learn to respect the international law as it stands, and not as it arbitrarily interprets it”.

Earlier on Saturday, the Turkish Minister of Defense, Hulusi Akar, said that Greece violates treaties and the international law by sending arms to islands of the Aegean Sea, which should be demilitarized.

Speaking with Turkish media, Akar accused Greece of not respecting the treaties it has signed with Turkey over the military status of some of the Greek islands, especially in the Eastern side of the Aegean Sea.

The Turkish Minister also said that Turkey respects the international law and called his Greek counterpart, Evangelos Apostolakis, to take all the necessary measures that would be part of sincere and constructive bilateral relations between Ankara and Athens.

Gennimatas noted in his response to Ankara’s official that ”Turkey needs to work toward the de-escalation of tensions and to build trust”.

The Greek Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson added that Akar’s remarks do not respond to the level of relations Greece, “as a democratic and European country”, wants to achieve with Turkey.

Akar’s remarks came less than 48 hours after Apostolakis’ interview with Greece’s Open TV, where the Greek Defense Minister said that Athens is concerned over Turkey’s decision to purchase the Russian-made S-400 missiles.