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Aegean Islands


  • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday warned Greece to demilitarise islands in the Aegean Sea.
  • The two countries who are NATO allies have a history of disputes between them.


  • The two countries have disputes over a range of issues over sovereignty and related rights in the region of the Aegean Sea.
  • The primary reason behind the dispute is the different interpretation of the maritime laws.
  • Turkey has not signed up to UNCLOS so it doesn’t recongnise Greece’s rights in its continental shelf nor its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
  • Other disputes rests in the maritime and aerial zones of influence, this is due to the geographical peculiarity of the region.
  • Most of the Aegean islands in the region belong to Greece this has hindered Turkey in extending any of its zones of influence beyond a few nautical miles off its coastline.

What is the current dispute?

  • Turkey is accusing Greece that it has been building a military presence in the region.
  • This is seen as a violation of the treaties that has been signed between them that guarantee the unarmed status of the Aegean islands.
  • Turkey argues that it has ceded those islands to Greece with a guarantee that the region would be dimilitarized.

Source The Hindu