EU has obligation to support Greece: Angela Merkel
All European Union countries have an obligation to support Greece, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on the Eastern Mediterranean dispute between Greece and Turkey over natural gas discovery in contested waters.
Speaking ahead of an informal meeting of the EU’s foreign ministers in Berlin earlier Friday, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias called for European sanctions on Turkey.
“I am waiting with a great interest in European Union's foreign affairs chief, Josep Borrell’s announcement on the options for sanctions on Turkey,” Dendias said of the EU’s foreign policy chief.
“We consider this an absolute necessity in order to achieve a de-escalation in the Mediterranean,” he said.
The measures, aim to limit Turkey's ability to explore natural gas in contested waters, which could include individuals, ships, or the use of European ports.
However, Germany is reportedly concerned that imposing sanctions on Turkey would undermine efforts to reach an understanding with Ankara.
Many EU governments seem to believe that putting pressure on Turkey will only harden its stance, a source told Kathimerini. “This makes it difficult to impose sanctions,” the source said.
The European Union is preparing sanctions against Turkey that could be discussed at the bloc's next summit on Sept. 24 in response to the eastern Mediterranean dispute with Greece, the EU's top diplomat said on Friday.