Ankara has made yet another move to dispute Greece’s domination in Kastellorizo island by calling on Athens not to proceed with scheduled military exercises near the island.
Turkish authorities have issued two NOTAM with which they call on Athens to cancel the planned exercises in the sea area west of Kastellorizo, and at the same time note that the island belongs in the Turkish search and rescue area of the Aegean Sea.
Specifically, the Turkish NOTAM A4447 / 16, which refers to the corresponding Greek A2200 / 16 that says that in the western region of Kastellorizo there will be the SAR military exercise in the October 18-19 weekend, Turkey argues that Kastellorizo (MEIS in Turkish, as mentioned in the NOTAM) is a demilitarized zone, and should not be included in the exercises of the Greek Armed Forces.
Moreover, on Tuesday Ankara issued NOTAM A4455 / 16 which states that the area in which the Greek Armed Forces exercise SAR (18-19 / 10) is conducted, belongs to the Turkish Research and Rescue zone, calling, therefore, on Greek authorities to cooperate with Turkey on the issue.
Kastellorizo island is a Greek municipality that belongs in the Dodecanese region. It is located in the southeastern Mediterranean, and lies roughly 2 kilometers (1 nautical mile) off the south coast of Turkey.