Paris/Istanbul: French President Emmanuel Macron announced that France had decided to fortify their military deployments in the Mediterranean Sea as Turkish activities have escalated tensions in the region. French frigate La Fayette and Rafale fighter jets have been deployed to the Mediterranean Sea. On Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened Greece over its activities in the region. France appears to have responded to Turkey’s threats with the latest military deployments. On the sidelines of the developments, an aggressive demand has been put forth in the US Congress for imposing sanctions so as to curb the Turkish activities.
A few days ago, Turkey had announced its unilateral decision by issuing a navigational warning called the Navtex and sent its research ship ‘Oruc Reis’ along with two auxiliary vessels near Greece’s Kastellorizo Bay for exploration. Turkey’s decision had invited sharp reactions from Greece, European nations as also NATO. Greece issued a high alert for its armed forces and began surveilling Turkish movements. Germany, which is currently the President of the European Council, had lambasted Turkey for its actions and said it had sent out the wrong message in the present situation. Despite the bold stance Greece and the European nations adopted, Turkey’s threat makes evident it is unwilling to change its decision.
The Turkish President threatened Greece and said, ‘We have told Greece if you attack our Oruc Reis, you will pay a heavy price. And they got their first answer today.’ The Turkish Foreign Minister has even written a letter to the European Union (EU) on the matter and warned them not to take senseless decisions against Turkey. However, a severe reaction emerged from France following Turkey’s threat.
‘The situation in the eastern Mediterranean Sea is becoming increasingly concerning by the day. Turkey’s unilateral decision on oil exploration has only added to the tensions simmering in the region. Deescalating the tensions is necessary. For that reason, France has decided to strengthen its military deployments in the Mediterranean Sea. We will also take assistance from other partnering European nations,’ said French President Emmanuel Macron as he declared sending reinforcements to the region. France has deployed its La Fayette naval frigate and Rafale fighters to the Mediterranean Sea.
The US, in the meanwhile, has initiated action to retaliate to the Turkish activities in the region. Senior senators have demanded sanctions against the country. Senior members of the US Senate, US Senate Foreign Relations Committee Bob Menendez and Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen, had sent a letter to the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo. ‘The US must immediately pressurise Turkey to remove its ships from international waters. At the same time, we must take a firm stand and urge the EU to impose additional sanctions on Turkey,’ the letter demanded. Moreover, the message made a special plea for imposing sanctions, such that would deliver a massive blow to the Turkish economy.