Turkey called back its research vessel Oruç Reis to port in order to support efforts by Germany and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg to facilitate dialogue with Greece. As Ankara and Athens continue to exchange statements, tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean will be discussed at the Special European Council on Sept. 24-25.
For the last month, there have been increasing reports about the rising tension in the Eastern Mediterranean between Turkey and Greece. Although tension in the Aegean Sea is not uncommon due to several disputes in regards to maritime delimitation, this time there are broader issues. There is confusion among the international observers about the nature of this tension and it could be appropriate to note a few points on what led to it.
French President Emmanuel Macron once said the 'NATO is brain dead.' Considering all the confusion the alliance is facing at critical moments, this statement has some basis. Lack of trust among the member countries and lack of cooperation and coordination have become some pervasive features of the strongest military alliance in modern history.
Putschist Gen. Khalifa Haftar’s western front in Libya collapsed last week as the Turkish-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) captured the strategically important al-Watiya air base to the southwest of Tripoli. The liberation of Tarhunah, a town some 65 kilometers (40 miles) to the capital’s southeast, will completely break the siege of Tripoli.
Libya's government is supported by Turkey, the only country providing the nation with weapons to fight putschist Gen. Khalifa Haftar, who is backed by many regional and global powers – such as the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Greece, Russia and France. Although European Union countries officially support the legitimate government of Fayez al-Sarraj, a number strongly support its illegitimate rival, Haftar, on the ground.