Turkey ready to resolve Eastern Mediterranean issue through dialogue: Erdoğan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan waves to members of the press after a cabinet meeting at the Presidential Complex in Ankara on August 10, 2020. (Photo by Adem ALTAN / AFP)

“Let’s come together as Mediterranean countries. Let’s find a formula that’s acceptable for everyone, that protects everyone’s rights. We are always there and ready for the solution of disputes through dialogue and on a fair basis,” Turkish President said in a televised speech on Monday.

Turkey is always ready to resolve Eastern Mediterranean issue through dialogue on equitable basis, the Turkish president said Monday.

"We are always here and ready to resolve conflicts through dialogue on equitable basis," Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said, following the Cabinet meeting in the capital Ankara.

Erdoğan also called on the Mediterranean countries to cooperate in finding "an acceptable formula that protects the rights of all."

"No way would consent to any initiative trying to lock the country to its shores, ignoring the vast Turkish territory," Erdoğan said.

"Turkey will continue to implement its own plans in the field and diplomacy until a common sense prevails on the issue [of ]," he added.

Last month, after Athens objected to Ankara's seismic survey in an area south of the island of Meis, or Kastellorizo, German diplomatic efforts helped defuse tension between Turkey and Greece.

But Greece's controversial move last week to sign a maritime delimitation agreement with Egypt, which Turkey says violates its continental shelf and maritime rights, has further sparked tension between the two neighbors.

Turkey also announced on Monday that its seismic vessel Oruç Reis will conduct research in the region until Aug. 23.

Ankara accuses Greece of pursuing maximalist policies in the Eastern Mediterranean and underlines that its maritime claims violate Turkey's sovereign rights.

Turkey has long contested the Greek Cypriot administration's unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) also has rights to the resources in the area.

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