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Greece, Turkey to Resume Exploratory Talks Over Mediterranean

Greece, Turkey to Resume Exploratory Talks Over Mediterranean

Thursday, 24 September, 2020 - 09:30
FILE PHOTO: Turkish seismic research vessel Oruc Reis is seen in Istanbul, Turkey, August 22, 2019. REUTERS/Murad Sezer

Greece and Turkey will resume exploratory talks over contested maritime claims in the eastern Mediterranean, Greek government spokesperson Stelios Petsas said Thursday.

After a four-year hiatus, Turkey and Greece have agreed to resume the talks following weeks of tensions that culminated in a collision between warships.

Greece had said this week that the talks, which broke off in 2016 after 60 rounds that made little progress over 14 years, would resume in the near future in Istanbul.

Turkey gave no timing for a resumption of the talks but a senior official said they could begin by the end of the month, Reuters reported.

“There are positive developments,” the official said.

Tensions flared last month after Ankara sent its Oruc Reis seismic survey ship into disputed waters, escorted by gunboats, to map out sea territory for possible oil and gas drilling.

A Turkish and a Greek warship collided during the standoff.

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