Berlin: The extension of Turkish seismic surveys a step in the wrong direction

The German government expressed its disappointment for the extension of the Turkish NAVTEX in view of Foreign Minister Haiko Maas visits to Athens and Ankara, adding that “the extension of the seismic surveys of the Turkish vessel there in the current situation is a step towards the wrong direction, because what we need now are de-escalation messages.”

He even warned that tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean are deteriorating the European Union’s relationship with Turkey and that any escalation would have even more serious consequences.

Asked if Berlin was worried about a possible military conflict in the region, German Foreign Ministry spokesperson Christopher Burger said the German government was taking the tensions “very seriously” and was “very concerned” that the tensions are deteriorating relations between the EU and Turkey and that, if tensions increase, a further escalation could have even more serious consequences (ie in relations with the EU).”

Referring to the contacts that Maas will have on Tuesday in Athens and Ankara, Burger noted that the efforts of Berlin were and remain necessary, adding that “from our point of view, a direct dialogue and steps remain necessary to de-escalate on both sides, in order to find a solution to the tension.”