Turkey to redeploy survey ship in Med, risking fresh tensions with Greece

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Turkey said on Sunday that it would send its Oruç Reis research vessel back into disputed waters of the eastern Mediterranean, state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Turkey’s navy has issued an advisory, known as NAVTEX, saying that the Oruç Reis will carry out seismic surveys in an area encapsulating the south of the Greek island of Kastellorizo until Oct. 22, a step that threatens to revive political and military tensions with fellow NATO member Greece.

The Oruç Reis will be joined in the search for hydrocarbons by two other ships; the Ataman and Cengiz Han, Anadolu said.

A standoff over territory between Turkey and Greece heightened in August when Turkey sent the Oruç Reis, accompanied by warships, into the same waters.

Turkey’s withdrawal of the Oruç Reis to port led to a diplomatic thaw after NATO-sponsored negotiations and both sides have agreed to resume exploratory talks to resolve their differences. No date has been set for the negotiations, which Turkey says will take place in its capital Ankara.

Ahval

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