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Turkey extends energy exploration operations in Mediterranean

Turkey has extended operations by a seismic research vessel in disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean, drawing an angry reaction from Greece.

Turkey has been sailing its Oruc Reis seismic research vessel and escorting naval ships in waters disputed with Greece in the Mediterranean Sea since early August, heightening tensions with Athens over the limits of their continental shelves.

The Turkish navy issued a new advisory for Oruc Reis on Monday, saying the ship would be working until September 12 instead of September 1.

The Greek Foreign Ministry reacted by saying that the new advisory was “illegal.”

“Turkey continues to ignore calls for dialog and to escalate its provocations. Greece won’t be blackmailed,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Turkish advisory came just after the European Union (EU) called for dialog between Ankara and Athens earlier on Monday. Greece, which has dispatched its own naval ships to shadow the Turkish vessels, had also on Wednesday said it was conditionally ready to de-escalate.

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