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France Sends Fighter Jets, Frigate to Eastern Med

France Sends Fighter Jets, Frigate to Eastern Med

Thursday, 13 August, 2020 - 08:15
FILE PHOTO: A Dassault Rafale fighter takes part in flying display during the 52nd Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport near Paris, France June 25, 2017. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol/File Photo

France will send two Rafale fighter jets and the naval frigate 'Lafayette' to the eastern Mediterranean as part of plans to increase its military presence in the region, the armed forces ministry said on Thursday, amid signs of tension with Turkey.

Earlier this week, French President Emmanuel Macron called on Turkey to halt oil and gas exploration in the disputed waters in that area, which has resulted in heightened tensions with Greece.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Wednesday urged Turkey to show "sense" in the naval showdown in the eastern Mediterranean.

Tensions were stoked Monday when Ankara dispatched the research ship Oruc Reis accompanied by Turkish naval vessels off the Greek island of Kastellorizo in the eastern Mediterranean.

Greece also deployed warships to monitor the vessel, which is currently sailing west of Cyprus.

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