Ankara strongly condemns the attacks of French President Emmanuel Macron against the Turkish leadership. “Macron does not leave attempts to smear Ankara against the backdrop of the failure of anti-Turkish plans of Paris in the foreign policy sphere,” said in a statement circulated today, September 10, the Turkish Foreign Ministry, reports the state news agency Anadolu.
The owner of the Elysian Palace “is driven by the reflexes of the former colonialist, arrogantly trying to teach others,” his statements are an indicator of helplessness and despair, said in a statement of the Turkish Foreign Ministry.
Ankara pointed out that “the times when France could freely promote its interests in the world are behind us.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry also drew attention to the “high rating” of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, “one of the European politicians who have received the most support from voters in elections in their countries.
“The position of the Turkish president is based on the support of the Turkish people. The Turkish authorities and people have been and will remain united in the face of groundless attacks,” the document says.
At the same time, official Ankara pointed out that earlier decisions taken with the participation of the Turkish side to delimit the exclusive economic zone in the Mediterranean Sea have nothing to do with Macron’s powers.
“Instead of acting as a “lawyer” of Greece and Greek Cyprus, taking unilateral and provocative steps contrary to the interests of the European Union, Paris should be called for dialogue and harmony in the region. The principles of the NATO alliance and common European interests demand this. The nationalism and ambitions of the French President contribute to the growth of tension in the region, jeopardizing the interests of Europe,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry noted.
“Attempts by France, which has no access to the eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea, to criticize Turkey’s actions are absurd. We leave the miserable situation of Macron, whose rating in the eyes of the public is constantly falling,” concluded the Turkish Foreign Ministry.
Earlier Thursday, President Macron called on Europe to speak with one voice against Turkey’s “unacceptable” behavior before the opening of the Mediterranean Summit (MED7: France, Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Cyprus, and Malta).
“We Europeans must be clear and firm about President Erdogan’s government, which today is behaving in an unacceptable manner,” Macron told reporters in French Corsica, where the summit opened.
According to him, at the moment Turkey “is no longer a partner in the region” of the Eastern Mediterranean due to its behavior, although Paris continues to hope for the resumption of a fruitful dialogue with Ankara.
As EADaily reported, on September 4, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu criticized French President Emmanuel Macron by using rather an offensive language for the Elysian Palace master. According to the head of Turkish diplomacy, the French leader “got hysterical” because of the development of the Libyan and Syrian conflicts, as well as the dispute over borders in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Relations between Turkey and France, NATO’s nominal allies, have sharply deteriorated amidst disagreements in Syria, Libya, and the Turkish-Hellenic dispute in the Eastern Mediterranean. Ankara accuses Paris of supporting Libyan National Army (LNA) commander Marshal Khalifa Haftar, who opposes the Turkish-led National Accord Government (NTC) in Tripoli.
Turkey and Greece announced in late August that they would conduct a military exercise in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, between Cyprus and Crete. France joined a military exercise with Italy, Greece and Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean, which took place from 26 to 28 August. In the military department of the largest country in Western Europe previously explained that three French multi-purpose fighter Rafale and one frigate with a helicopter onboard became part of joint maneuvers.
Turkey had earlier extended the exploration mission of its research vessel Oruç Reis in the Eastern Mediterranean, which led to increased tensions in the region. The gas and oil exploration works will continue until September 12. Oruç Reis is protected by a special Turkish flotilla. The decision was taken by the Turkish side after European Union officials called for dialogue with Ankara on the parties to the heated conflict, while simultaneously demanding that it refrain from unilateral steps in the Eastern Mediterranean.
The Greek Foreign Ministry called the extension of the Turkish research mission illegal and called on the neighboring country to take immediate steps to de-escalate the situation and continue working to ensure stability in the region.
Turkey is claiming certain maritime areas under an agreement it signed with the Libyan NTC in November 2019. Last month, Greece and Egypt concluded their own agreement to delineate their exclusive economic zones in the Eastern Mediterranean