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Hurriyet: Turkish coast guard blocks Greek ships from Imia

Greek Navy denies incident

According to a report by Turkish site Hurriyetdailynews.com, Turkish coast guard boats prevented Greek ships from approaching the islets of Imia (Kardak, as they are called in the piece). As the report says: “The Turkish Coast Guard prevented one Greek battleship and two Greek coast guard boats from approaching the disputed islets of Kardak on Jan. 3, Doğan News Agency has reported.
The two countries’ boats were 30 meters apart and ran parallel to each other off the coast of Bodrum’s Turgutreis neighborhood along the southern Aegean Coast, according to witnesses.
The Greek boats reportedly meant to head toward the disputed islets of Kardak during the five hours-long standoff, which began at around 10:00 a.m. local time.

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The islets, “Imia” in Greek and “Kardak” in Turkish, are a pair of two small uninhabited rocks in the Aegean Sea, situated between the Greek island chain of the Dodecanese and the southwestern mainland coast of Turkey. Greece and Turkey nearly went to war over the islets in 1995.” In response to the report, the Hellenic Navy told protothema.gr that “A Navy ship, the “Nikiphoros” gunboat, patrolled near in Imia, but nothing happened. Nor was there a verbal episode, nor anything else mentioned in the Turkish publication”, an officer said.