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UN chief urges Greece, Türkiye to pursue dialogue to ease tensions

UN chief urges Greece, Türkiye to pursue dialogue to ease tensions
Antonio Guterres emphasizes 'that actions and statements that can heighten tensions should be avoided,' says spokesman

By Michael Hernandez

WASHINGTON (AA) - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is appealing to NATO allies Greece and Türkiye to pursue dialogue to diplomatically lower heightened tensions, his spokesperson said on Friday.

For Guterres it is "important to underscore that actions and statements that can heighten tensions should be avoided, and he reiterates the importance of resolving all disputes peacefully in this context," Stephane Dujarric told reporters.

"He encourages Greece and Turkey to continue with bilateral dialogue as a means to lower tensions on the legal aspects that you raise from the Secretary's point of view, we do not take a position to provide comments in relation to matters concerning the sovereignty of sovereign rights and jurisdiction of member states over their maritime space," he added.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu earlier Friday said Greece’s response to a Turkish letter on disputes in the Aegean Sea that Ankara sent to the UN, NATO, Brussels, and EU member state leaders earlier this month was "weak" and lacked "legal arguments".

Cavusoglu emphasized in remarks to reporters that Ankara has made repeated efforts to resolve issues through diplomacy.

Türkiye, a NATO member for over 70 years, has complained of repeated provocative actions and rhetoric by Greece in the region in recent months, including arming islands near Turkish shores that are demilitarized under treaty obligations, saying that such moves frustrate its good faith efforts towards peace.

*Betul Yuruk contributed to the story from United Nations

source: News Feed
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