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Newark

The head of the EU foreign Ministers will discuss relations with Turkey

The EU foreign Ministers intend to consider the whole complex of relations with Turkey amid tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean over Ankara's plans to carry out exploration and extraction of hydrocarbons off the coast of Greece and Cyprus, said EU high representative for foreign and security policy, Josep Borrell.

"At the next foreign Affairs Council we will discuss our relations with Turkey, taking into consideration all aspects of these complex relationships," said Borrell at the end of a video conference of European Ministers of foreign Affairs.

According to him, the EU is concerned about the escalation on the part of Turkey. "We insist on de-escalation, returning to partnership," said Borrell. He explained that this discussion was initiated by Greece and Cyprus.

Borrell also noted a number of incidents involving Turkey, including in the framework of the European operations IRINI aimed at maintaining a UN arms embargo against Libya.

In recent months, increasing tension in Greek-Turkish relations. The latest example was the publication in the Turkish official Gazette of applications to the Turkish petroleum Corporation (TPAO) to carry out studies in the areas of the Greek continental shelf. Adviser to the Prime Minister of Greece's national security, then Minister of national defense of Greece Nikos Panayotopoulos said in recent days about the readiness, if necessary, to give a military response by Turkey.

Greece stated that a possible escalation by Turkey will not lead to Greek-Turkish crisis, and the European-Turkish crisis.

At the end of November 2019, the President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the head of the national consensus government (NTC) of Libya Fayez Sarraj controlling only part of the country, have signed a Memorandum of cooperation in the military sphere and on mutual understanding relating to Maritime zones. Greece believes that Turkey is trying to assign a significant part of the Greek exclusive economic zone (EEZ), and calls illegal the agreement.

In addition, the EU finds Ankara, why the Turkish military is that the military conflict in Libya supported the Government of national consensus, last week, was not allowed to inspect the ship, heading towards the Libyan coast. According to media reports, the ship that was under the protection of the ships of the Turkish Navy, could be weapons and equipment for the NTC forces.