Turkey warns Greece after flag is hoisted on disputed island

Turkish special forces on one of the disputed islets known as Kardak in Turkish and Imia in Greek. (AP Photo)
Updated 16 April 2018
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Turkey warns Greece after flag is hoisted on disputed island

  • Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters that the Turkish coast guards had removed the flag from the island off the coast of the Aegean resort of Didim.
  • Yildirim said the incident was similar to one in 1996 when the two NATO allies nearly went to war over uninhabited islets — known as Imia in Greek and Kardak in Turkish.

Ankara: Turkey warned Greece on Monday to refrain from “provocations” after a Greek flag was hoisted on a disputed, uninhabited islet in the Aegean Sea off the Turkish coast.
Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters that the Turkish coast guards had removed the flag from the island off the coast of the Aegean resort of Didim.
Yildirim said the incident was similar to one in 1996 when the two NATO allies nearly went to war over uninhabited islets — known as Imia in Greek and Kardak in Turkish — which both Turkey and Greece claim.
“Our advice to Greece would be to stay away from provocations and agitations,” Yildirim said adding that Turkey was “determined to give the necessary response” to such acts.
Despite two decades of efforts to improve relations, Greece and Turkey have seen a spike in tensions in recent weeks over disputed Aegean boundaries as well as over oil-and-gas drilling rights off the divided island of Cyprus.
Asked about the incident during a joint news conference with visiting the NATO chief, Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu accused Greece’s defense minister — the outspoken leader of Greece’s nationalist party — of raising tensions in the Aegean Sea.
“His brattiness shouldn’t reach a level where it’ll damage relations between the two countries,” Cavusoglu said.
In Athens, Greek government spokesman Dimitris Tzannakopoulos said the government had no knowledge of the incident and described the remarks by Yildirim as “provocative and reprehensible.”
“I think Mr. Yildirim should be more careful,” Tzannakopoulos said. “We call on Turkey to return to a path of respect for international law ... They should take an initiative to de-escalate the tension.”


May to argue 2nd referendum would violate public trust

Updated 17 December 2018
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May to argue 2nd referendum would violate public trust

LONDON: Prime Minister Theresa May is set to condemn calls for a second referendum on Britain’s departure from the European Union, saying it would do irreparable damage to trust in democracy.
In remarks released ahead of her speech in the House of Commons on Monday, May says that staging another referendum “would say to millions who trusted in democracy that our democracy does not deliver.”
She’s also expected to argue that such a ballot would exacerbate divisions rather than heal them.
May’s supporters distanced themselves from media reports that senior figures in her government held talks with opposition Labour lawmakers aimed at holding another vote.
With time growing short toward Britain’s scheduled March 29 departure, it remains unclear whether the country will leave with a deal or crash out with no deal.