Anadolu Agency target of Greek media for footage depicting international law violation


ANKARA

Greek media falsely accused Anadolu Agency of espionage Thursday regarding footage that provides tangible evidence about how Greece has deployed weapons and troops to an island 5 miles southwest of Türkiye’s Bodrum peninsula, in violation of the international treaties.

The Kathimerini newspaper said Turkish media was spying on Keci (Pserimos) island with Anadolu Agency and TRT News — Türkiye’s public broadcaster — publishing images of the island.

The Logos daily published a headline that said Turkish media “exaggerated” its report and Anadolu Agency “exceeded the limits of provocation.” Other online media websites referred to the report as “espionage.”

Greek social media users rallied around a tweet by Anadolu Agency Director General Serdar Karagoz, who congratulated reporters on the story. They pointed fingers at reporters while hurling provocative comments.

The insults began after Anadolu Agency recorded footage of Greek troops and heavy weapons deployed to the island.

A helipad, four prefabricated buildings, guard and watch towers, transmitters, water tanks, and solar panels can be clearly seen.

Greek soldiers are seen in military camouflage around stone structures resembling trenches or shelters.

And Greek artillery batteries, though covered, around the Greek flag drawn on the land, can be spotted.

What kind of military activities does Greece carry out on the islands?

Greece has been militarizing the islands since 1960, violating the non-military status despite Türkiye’s opposition and obligations arising from international agreements.

Although Greece accepted the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice in 1993, it made a reservation about “national security interests” to prevent the issue of the Eastern Aegean islands from being referred to the International Court of Justice.

The islands of Samothraki, Lemnos, Lesvos, Samos, Chios, Psara and Ikaria are supposed to be currently demilitarized but Greece violates the agreements by deploying brigades and divisions, as well as cannons and rifles.

Greece adopts the same attitude on the islands of Patmos, Leros, Kalymnos, Kos, Tilos, Karpathos, Symi, Rhodes, and Kastellorizo and violates the law in 0 of the 14 Dodecanese islands.

In total, Athens has militarized 16 islands in the Eastern Aegean.

What steps have Türkiye taken in response to unlawful Greek acts?

Türkiye has rejected the militarization of the islands by Greece since the very beginning, protesting the Greek policy of violating the non-military status of the islands since the 1960s.

Ankara has issued protests through diplomatic channels and requested the violations stop. The issue came to the UN and NATO agenda in the 1970s.

The latest Turkish diplomatic move was to send a letter of complaint to the UN in July 2021, saying the militarization of the islands posed a serious threat to Türkiye’s security.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the sovereignty of the islands would be questionable in the scenario that Athens has maintained its violations.



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