SYRIZA MP Yiannis Tsironis, who served as Minister for Public Order and is running for the municipality of Athens in the upcoming local elections, caused an uproar after saying the island of Kastelorizo was not in the Aegean Sea during a TV panel discussion.
“The Greek, completely Greek Kastelorizo is not in the Aegean”, he said during a discussion on Open channel over the Greek-Turkish relations.
“Geographically it is not in the Aegean, we cannot do anything about it. It is in the eastern Mediterranean, it is in the south, down. It’s not in the Aegean. The Aegean Sea is a sea that reaches until Kos and Rhodes”, he went on to say.
Kastelorizo is at the … centre of Turkey’s revisionist policy in an effort to dispute Greece’s sovereignty over the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the expansion of the sea shelf to 12 nm.
Nevertheless, the former minister of SYRIZA seemed to be unwavering in his views, with most of the other panel members listening in shock. He added: “Look at the map. Kastelorizo … is not in the Aegean. The Aegean stops somewhere … It is after Icario and Carpathio. Because I served in the navy, which is why I am telling you. See the map. The Aegean, for example, is not under Crete.”
Tsironi’s opinions caused reactions with the Mayor of Megistis, wondering: “And where do we belong to, Turkey?”
New Democracy shadow Foreign Minister George Koumoutsakos accused the former minister of irresponsibility and urged Foreign Minister George Katrougalos to take a direct position.