France and Germany give Turkey a week “to stop provocations”

France and Germany on Thursday accused Turkey of continuing to provoke the European Union with its actions in the Eastern Mediterranean, and gave it a week to clarify its positions, Reuters reports.

“It is clear to us that Turkey is constantly carrying out provocative acts that are unacceptable,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told a press conference alongside his German and Polish counterparts.

According to the report, Le Drian said that the ball was in Ankara’s court, but that the European Union was ready to change the balance of power if Turkey did not return to dialogue.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called Turkey’s decision to send the ship back to the Mediterranean as “inadmissible”.

Asked about the possibility of advancing the EU sanctions, he said the bloc would wait a week to decide how to react.

“It has been twice as expected that the discussions have not taken place and we do not know when they will occur,” he said. “We must wait to see if there is progress in a week and then we will see what attitude the EU should adopt,” quoted Reuters.

Despite the agreement at the EU summit on October 2 aimed at persuading Ankara to stop exploring for natural gas in Greek and Cypriot waters, Turkey said on Wednesday it was restarting operations.

Turkey withdrew its Oruc Reis vessel last month, just before the EU summit, during which economic sanctions were discussed, only to redeploy it on Monday.

The bloc said it would review the possibility of sanctions on Turkey at a European summit in December.


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