A senior adviser to Turkey’s leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said any foreign political or military official who steps onto the disputed Aegean islet of Imia will have their arms and legs broken.
In an implicit threat to Greek officials from Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras downwards, Yigit Bulut — who in 2013 claimed foreign powers were trying to kill Erdogan through telekinesis — also told state broadcaster TRT that anyone who landed on Imia would face Turkey’s wrath “worse than in Afrin”.
The outburst comes just days after Turkish media claimed a wreath-laying ceremony at Imia by Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos had been blocked.
Greece and Turkey almost went to war in January 1996 in a sovereignty dispute over Imia (Kardak in Turkish).
U.S. ambassador to Greece, Geoffrey Pyatt, has also spoken of Washington’s concern at a possible “accident” between Greece and Turkey in the Aegean.
Bulut has proved to be a controversial figure in the past. A former editor-in-chief at news channel Haberturk TV from 2009 to 2012 he was appointed a senior economic advisor to then prime minister Erdogan. He also claimed the 2013 anti-government Gezi Park protests were organized by German airline Lufthansa.