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Demarche to be issued for every Turkish overflight, violation

Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias has ordered the competent service to issue a demarche to Ankara every time Turkish fighter jets violate Greek national airspace and conduct overflights to highlight Turkey’s behavior for all to see.

In order to best coordinate this procedure, contacts have intensified between the Greek Embassy in Ankara and the competent military services in the Defense Ministry to provide solutions without delay. Obviously the procedure to issue a demarche exists, but the initiative was taken to standardize the process. The mobilization is part of a broader strategy that aims to highlight the methodical approach Turkey takes with its provocations.

Greece has already launched a diplomatic campaign with a series of maps which depict clearly how Turkey’s expansionist aims have evolved over the last 50 years. They are currently being presented by Greek delegations around the world to governments, public and private bodies. Dendias himself presented these maps to his interlocutors in recent weeks, most of whom seem to understand Turkey’s disruptive stance in this part of Europe in recent years.

Sources say the map campaign will be followed by other diplomatic initiatives as Athens remains determined not to get dragged into a pointless rhetorical confrontation, opting instead to constantly inform all allies, partners and other international actors about Ankara’s stance.

At the same time, signals are arriving in Athens indicating Greece’s growing value, in particular Alexandroupoli, as a hub for the EU’s diversification of energy sources.

According to well-informed sources, visiting Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto expressed his country’s intention to Dendias of joining the states seeking natural gas that will arrive at the floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) at Alexandroupoli. The initial planning includes Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova and in the long run Ukraine, while for Hungary there have been discussions at the EU level. North Macedonia, Albania and Serbia have also expressed interest in the energy interconnection. During his stay in Athens, Szijjarto and the Hungarian delegation had more technical talks on the issue with Energy Minister Kostas Skrekas and his staff.

Despite the fact that at the moment the possibilities of promoting natural gas through Alexandroupoli are not what the occasion would require, it is estimated that the Ukraine crisis will accelerate this course.