Turkey vs Greece: Turkey 'had no choice' but to send ship, claims embassy – tensions erupt

The Oruc Reis was sent to the region, accompanied by a flotilla of Turkish navy vessels, last week, prompting condemnation by Greece, whose Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis vowed: “No challenge will go unanswered.” The statement, issued after an enquiry by Express.co.uk, suggested the eastern Mediterranean had become “a region of disputes with overlapping claims of Continental Shelf/ Exclusive Economic Zone (CS/EEZ)”.

It blamed the “maximalist position” of the “Greek/Greek Cypriot duo”, accusing the Greek Cypriot Administration (GCA) of starting drilling operations in 2011, “in violation of Turkey’s and Turkish Cypriots’ (TC) rights”.

The statement added: “Meanwhile, Turkey, while refraining from action at sea, was constantly inviting all parties, except for GCA, to engage in negotiations based on international law and the principle of equity.”

Turkey had concluded agreements with what it refers to as the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) in 2011 and with Libya in 2019 with respect to the delimitation of maritime jurisdiction areas in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The statement explained: “However, the first drilling of GCA left Turkey and TCs with no option but to react to this action and started drilling in Turkey’s continental shelf.

“Recently, in July, a seismic research vessel, Oruç Reis was deployed to an area of Turkey’s continental shelf, which was declared to the UN, part of which Greece claims to be overlapping with her own continental shelf.”

As previously mentioned in a speech by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Greece based its claim on its ownership of Kastellorizo, located barely a mile from the Turkish mainland and 360 miles from the Greek mainland.

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However, the statement added: “In spite of that, August 7, hours before the release of the joint statement regarding the restart of talks, Greece announced the signing of a maritime boundary delimitation agreement with Egypt, which violates Turkey’s continental shelf.

“With this agreement, which, as far as Turkey is concerned is null and void, Greece demonstrated her unwillingness to start an honest and sincere dialogue with Turkey.

“Following this, Turkey has resumed hydrocarbon research activities within her own continental shelf.

“The Turkish Navy has also been deployed to exercise self-defence for the seismic research ship, under strict orders to not to open fire first.”

The statement concluded: “Turkey believes current issues in the Eastern Mediterranean have to resolved bilaterally, instead of creating a multilateral deadlock.

“Turkey is ready to engage on genuine and sincere dialogue.”

Trump SHOCK as former adviser reveals president 'had trouble with women leaders'

The former national security adviser has recently come into the spotlight with a tell all book released about Trump’s presidency. The Room Where It Happened was attempted to be blocked by the Trump administration, and revealed several examples of Trump’s missteps with foreign leaders.

In an interview with Sky News, Mr Bolton claimed that Trump “has trouble with women leaders” and used former Prime Minister Theresa May as an example.

While Bolton describes Trump as a talker, he says of May: “(She) is the kind of politician who says what she has to say, and there’s not a lot of small talk.

“There’s not a lot of back and forth. That’s a personal style.

“Doesn’t come anywhere close to Donald Trump’s personal style.

“My own opinion, and I can’t prove this, I think he has trouble with women leaders.”

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He also refers to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, saying that the US president “had trouble” with her as well.

Bolton continued: “These are not substantive disagreements.

“These are personality issues.

“But because of the way Trump looks at relations with other leaders, he has enormous difficulty distinguishing between the personal relationship he has with the leader of another country, and the fundamental US relationship with the other country as a whole.”

When asked if the president was sexist, Mr Bolton said: “Time and again, we seemed to run into that difficulty.”

Despite his issues with the two female leaders, Bolton was at pains to stress that Trump “had bad relationships with plenty of male leaders too”.

Referencing the coronavirus pandemic, he claimed that the president “didn’t want to hear” about it in January.

He said: “He didn’t want to hear bad news about his buddy, (Chinese President) Xi Jinping.

“He didn’t want to hear the truth about China covering up the extent of the threat of the coronavirus.

“He didn’t want to hear about China, maybe not fulfilling its terms under the limited trade deal he negotiated.

“And most important of all he didn’t want to hear about potential bad economic news for the United States from a widespread pandemic which would endanger his ticket to re-election.”

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Bolton also defended his decision not to participate in the Democrats impeachment trial for the president, after he came under fire for withholding information that may have seen Trump ousted from office.

He said: “The House Democrats took the impeachment process right off a cliff and halfway down they looked up and said ‘hey come and join us’ and I wasn’t about to do that.”

In his book, Bolton confirms that Trump directly linked the provision of security for Ukraine with their investigation into Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

Bolton also reveals that Trump had requested President Jinping purchase more American farm produce to help boost his popularity in rustic states for re-election.

In a troubling accusation, Bolton also claimed that Trump was unaware that the UK had nuclear weapons until he met with Theresa May.

He said: “I can tell you in that meeting, which was at Chequers hosted by Prime Minister May, when the president made that comment, the stiff British upper lips didn’t quiver, but their eyes got wide as saucers.

“And I was sitting there thinking to myself, what do we say next?

“Then I think Prime Minister May changed the subject fairly quickly.”