Greece and Egypt are conducting a grand-scale exercise from October 29th to November 4th, “MEDUSA 5”. The exercise is of extreme importance as the co-operation between the two countries deepens, something that one can see with the number of weapon systems each country dedicated to the exercise.
The way that Greece and Egypt see their alliance can be encapsulated in the words of a high ranking Egyptian officer who said to his Greek counterpart “Consider this ship as yours”, referring to the Mistral Class Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) ENS Anwar Alsadat.
As it was expected, Turkey did not see this in a good way, apparently thinking that this co-operation challenges its presence in the Eastern Mediterranean. Ankara’s reaction was the release of a NAVTEX on Thursday, declaring that the exercise is violating the…international law as the exercise was conducted, among other locations, at the Greek island of Rhodes which Turkey considers as a de-militarised zone…
On Friday morning, a Turkish Navy AB-212 helicopter violated the Athens FIR and the Greek airspace and moved on to fly provocatively 30 meters over Greek territory, the islet of Imia which was the area of the famous 1996 Greek-Turkish crisis. It should be noted that flying without permission over another country’s territory is an action that according to the international diplomatic practices is considered to be among the most serious violations that can happen during peacetime.
It was reported that Turkish ships attempted to approach the area of the exercise in order to gather information, mainly through electronic warfare intelligence gathering equipment, but were blocked by the forces responsible for the security of the exercise.
(Click to enlarge)