Coast guard charges Turkey with trying to push migrants into Greek waters

An inflatable dinghy carrying dozens of foreign nationals attempted to enter Greek waters in the company of Turkish coast guard vessels in the early morning hours on Tuesday, said the Hellenic Coast Guard.

By way of dangerous manoeuvering, the Turkish coast guard vessels tried to direct the dinghy to enter Greek territorial waters illegally. The Greek coast guard tried to communicate with the Turkish vessels repeatedly to pick up the dinghy’s passengers, but to no avail. The dinghy with the migrants never actually crossed into Greek waters and its passengers were eventually collected by Turkish patrol boats.

At the same time, a Turkish patrol boat harassed Greek coast guard vessels, according to a case report.

“Turkey has once again behaved like a pirate state in the Aegean,” said Shipping & Island Policy Minister Yiannis Plakiotakis, describing the incident as having being carried out “in violation of Turkey’s obligations to the EU.”

“The European Union ought to press Turkey much harder to make it conform to its international committments,” he added.