Ankara pushes French, Greek vessels out of Turkish waters
A French research ship and a Greek frigate were forced to leave Ankara's continental shelf last week, after Turkish naval vessels were deployed to disperse the flotilla, according to Turkish media reports.
The incident occurred on 15 April, while Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias was in Ankara to defuse tensions with Turkey, according to Hurriyet.
It was during this time that Greece notified sailors with a NAVTEX notification saying that the French "L'Atalante" ship would be conducting research in disputed areas of the eastern Mediterranean.
Turkey responded with a warning saying that the area south of Crete and Rhodes islands are part of Turkey's continental shelf.
When the French and Greek vessels proceeded with the research trip, the vessels became locked in a short standoff with two Turkish frigates.
The standoff ended with the French and Greek vessels leaving the area to conduct their research elsewhere.
Turkey and Greece have long disagreed over maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean and Aegean, where claims over hydrocarbon resources have escalated tensions.
Last year, Turkey deployed the Oruc Reis exploration vessel and warships to the disputed waters and has extended its mission several times despite repeated calls to stop by Greece and the EU.