ANKARA, Aug 13 – President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday that the only solution to Turkey’s dispute with Greece over energy exploration in the eastern Mediterranean was through dialog and negotiation, and Ankara was not chasing any “adventures” in the region.
Turkey and Greece, NATO allies, are vehemently at odds over overlapping claims for hydrocarbon resources in the region, and tensions have risen since Ankara launched exploration operations in a disputed area of the Mediterranean on Monday, in a move Greece called illegal.
Speaking to members of his ruling AK Party, Erdogan said the escalation of tensions in the region was caused by Greece, and urged Athens to respect Turkey’s rights. “The path to a solution in the eastern Mediterranean is via dialog and negotiation. We are not chasing any unnecessary adventures or seeking tensions,” he said. (Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu and Ali Kucukgocmen Editing by Dominic Evans)