Aegean Dispute

The Aegean dispute is a set of interrelated controversial issues between Greece and Turkey over sovereignty and related rights in the area of the Aegean Sea. This set of conflicts has had a large effect on Greek-Turkish relations since the 1970s. It has twice led to crises coming close to the outbreak of military hostilities, in 1987 and in early 1996. The issues in the Aegean fall into several categories:

  • The delimitation of the territorial waters,
  • The delimitation of the national airspace,
  • The delimitation of exclusive economic zones and the use of the continental shelf,
  • The delimitation of Flight Information Regions (FIR), and their significance for the control of military flight activity,
  • The issue of the demilitarized status assigned to some of the Greek islands in the area,
  • Turkish claims of "grey zones" of undetermined sovereignty over a number of small islets, most notably the islets of Imia/Kardak.

Since 1998, the two countries have been coming closer to overcome the tensions through a series of diplomatic measures, particularly with a view to easing Turkey's accession to the European Union. However, as of 2010, differences over suitable diplomatic paths to a substantial solution are still unresolved.

See also: Foreign relations of Turkey, Foreign relations of Greece

Read more about Aegean Dispute:  Maritime and Areal Zones of Influence, The Islands, Turkish Incidents With Frontex, Strategies of Conflict Resolution

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