Published On: Tue, Sep 1st, 2020

Macron will not ‘fall into’ the trap of waging war with Turkey as tensions escalate | World | News

Over recent weeks, tensions between France and Turkey has escalated following the territorial dispute between Ankara and Greece, sparking fears of a potential World War 3 outbreak.

Despite France having no coastline with the Eastern Mediterranean, Mr Macron called for EU sanctions against Turkey arguing they violated Greek and Cypriot sovereignty over their territorial waters.

Although Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan has threatened to wage war with Greece, Mr Macron has admitted he will not fall into the trap of the escalating powers in the region.

He told Politico: “The difficulty of those who defend a pluralist path is not to fall into the trap of the escalation of powers; it’s the trap I don’t want to fall into and I won’t fall into, including in the Eastern Mediterranean.”

Tensions between Turkey and Greece escalated this month after Ankara deployed the Oruç Reis vessel to the Mediterranean Sea to search for oil and gas.

After being escorted by gunboats, Greece called for Turkey to stop the “illegal activities”.

The US, EU, France and Israel all condemned the actions by Ankara and Mr Erdogan lashed out at the French President.

The Turkish leader claimed Mr Macron was pushing Greece into taking “wrong steps” in the region.

In response to this, Mr Macron urged for peaceful dialogue between the neighbouring countries and NATO allies.

READ MORE: Turkey threatens Greece with war for extending its territorial waters

Over the weekend, EU member states agreed to issue sanctions against Ankara if they refuse to deescalate tensions on the region.

EU top diplomat Josep Borrell said: “We (the EU member states) are clear and determined in defending the European Union’s interests and solidarity with Greece and Cyprus.

“Turkey has to refrain from unilateral actions.

“This is a basic element to allow the dialogue to advance.”

He also went on to say “the most pressing and urgent thing is to solve the question of the drillings and the presence of Turkish boats in Greek and Cypriot waters”.

Tensions in the region have intensified after Greece plans to expand its maritime borders in the Aegean Sea, sparking fears it could lead to war.

Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Athens is allowed to double its western territorial waters with Italy to 12 nautical miles.

It is believed, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is wanting to extend its borders on the eastern side with Turkey.

Turkey’s foreign affairs minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu lashed out at Mr Mitsotakis’ plans claiming it will be the cause of war.

He said: “In the Aegean, Greece cannot extend its borders to 12 miles.

“This is a cause of war (cases belli). We are not going to allow Greece to extend its territorial waters from six to 12 miles.

“I am being pretty clear.”

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