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Wednesday, July 28, 2021

France and Germany are giving Turkey a one-week ultimatum to clarify its position in the Eastern Mediterranean


France and Germany are giving Turkey a one-week ultimatum to clarify its position, following Ankara’s ongoing provocations in the Eastern Mediterranean, according to Reuters.

Ignoring the conclusions of the October 2nd EU Summit, which aimed to persuade Turkey to suspend gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean, Ankara announced on Wednesday that it is resuming exploration, which it had suspended last month.

“It is clear to us that Turkey is insisting on provocative actions that are unacceptable,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said during a news conference with his German and Polish counterparts. He added that the “ball” is now in Ankara’s court, but the EU is ready to change the balance of power in the event that Turkey does not respond to the dialogue.

Le Drian also criticized Turkey’s role in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, where Ankara is backing Azerbaijan against Armenians, Reuters reported. “There will be no military victory on this issue, and that is why there must be a truce,” he said.

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On his part, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called Turkey’s decision to resume research in the East Mediterranean “unacceptable,” and when asked about sanctions against Ankara, he said the EU would wait a week before deciding how to react.

“This is the second time the expected talks have not taken place and we do not know when this will happen,” he said. “We will have to wait and see if there is progress in a week and then we will decide what attitude the EU should take.”

Today’s EU Summit takes on special significance in light of the failed German efforts to broker bilateral talks between Greece and Turkey for the de-escalation.

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