CRETE, Greece – In a move that could be regarded as a symbolic show of support for Greece in its tense standoff with Turkey, America’s top diplomat said on Tuesday that the United States would hold a huge Would build a naval ship that shares with Greece just 600 miles off the Turkish coast.
The Herschel “Woody” Williams, an expeditionary sea base ship, is assigned to US Africa Command and is not the type of ship that can interfere with high-intensity conflict, reducing escalating tensions between Turkey and Greece Should – two Nath allies – boil up.
But its deployment in Sauda Bay, near a joint US-Greek base where Turkey sent surveying and drilling vessels to search for gas earlier this year, was a symbolic warning of America’s growing jealousy with Ankara. could work.
The dispute with Turkey – along with how to resolve it – was prominent in Greece’s Prime Minister Kiriakos Mitsotakis’ priorities, following a series of meetings and tours in Sauda Bay on Tuesday, US Secretary of State, Mike Pomoyo.
Mr. Mitsotakis accused Turkey of violating international laws with its expansionist strategy to claim water and resources in the eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean that are controlled by Greece and other countries.
“This is a very sensitive area that has been tried by Turkish aggression recently with provocative actions,” Mr. Mitsotakis told reporters after a private meeting with Mr. Pompio. He said Turkey had averted tension with excessive rhetoric and misleading communication about its intent: “In other words, action that contradicts the values of the Western world,” Mr Mitsotakis said.
The widespread rift puts the United States in an unstable state, and not only because it is being torn between two fellow NATO states. The US alliance with Turkey is central to the Trump administration’s campaign to overcome Shia militias and other Iranian-backed efforts in Syria, where Iran supports President Bashar al-Assad’s government. The United States has a large airport in Incirlik, Turkey, where it stores strategic nuclear weapons.
But the Trump administration has also sought to reverse some of Turkey’s aggression, with mixed success.
Turkey’s incursion into northeastern Syria, sending troops to areas captured by Kurdish fighters, considered Ankara terrorist organizations, has threatened the major ground force that had overtaken the Islamic State. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has detained US citizens, who are governed in an autocratic manner and host Palestinian militias who have been designated as terrorists by the United States.
The United States has not formally sought to arbitrate the dispute between Turkey and Greece; This is a recent task handled by Germany.
In his public remarks on Tuesday, Mr. Pompeo seriously sought the removal of the division.
“We strongly support negotiations between Greece and Turkey, NATO allies and encourage them to resume discussion of these issues as soon as possible,” Mr. Pompio said in remarks with Mr. Mitsotakis.
He described progress in mediation efforts by NATO, and said that the development of the eastern Mediterranean Sea “should promote cooperation and provide a foundation for sustainable energy security and economic prosperity of the entire region.”
Earlier this month, Mr. Pompeo visited Cyprus – which has also objected to Turkish activities in disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean Sea – and to the United States over the use of Turkish warships and jet fighters in his energy exploration efforts Declared “deeply concerned”. Turkey invaded Cyprus in 1974 and claimed the north of the island as its territory, which is recognized elsewhere in the world.
Greece and Turkey almost went to war on a deserted island in 1996, faced with a crisis by American diplomacy.
Mr Mitsotakis noted that Mr Pompeo had a chance to feel Turkey’s aggression off the coast of Cyprus during that visit, and said after Tuesday’s talks that he believed Greece and the United States on the issue Were “fully aligned”.