During a teleconference meeting, the Foreign Ministers of Greece, Nikos Dendias, Cyprus, Nikos Christodoulides, Egypt,  Sameh Shoukry, France, Jean-Yves Le Drian and the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, sent a clear message to Turkey to “fully respect the sovereignty and the sovereign rights of all states in their maritime zones in the eastern Mediterranean”.

In particular, according to the joint declaration, the foreign ministers condemned the escalation of Turkey’s violations of the Greek national airspace, including over flights of inhabited areas and territorial waters in violation of International Law. The ministers also condemned Turkey’s ongoing illegal activities in the EEZ and the territorial waters of Cyprus, as it is a clear violation of international law as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Furthermore, the Ministers condemned the instrumentalization of civilians by Turkey in an attempt to illegally cross Greek land borders as well as its continued support for illegal crossings of Greek sea boundaries. In the joint declaration’s final part, the foreign ministers of the five countries in the wider region, agreed to continue their consultations on a regular basis.

The joint declaration angered Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Speaking before the Council of Ministers, the leader of our neighboring country attacked those who signed the text, saying that Turkey did not intend to take a step back in terms of its rights.