A Turkish coast guard vessel carried out dangerous maneuvers around a Greek patrol boat in Greek territorial waters near Leros island, the Shipping and Island Policy Ministry said on Wednesday.
The incident occurred on Monday off Farmakonisi, located northeast of Leros in the eastern Aegean. The Turkish boat harassed a Greek Port Authority and Coast Guard patrol boat from Leros.
According to a ministry statement, the Greek vessel had been sent to identify a target in the wider sea region as a Turkish vessel had entered Greek territorial waters and did not respond to VHF call attempts.
There were no injuries or damage to either patrol boat, said the ministry, which released a video of the incident.
Turkish Coast Guard plays dangerous games in the Aegean
A similar incident occurred in June 2021 when a Greek Coast Guard patrol boat was harassed by a Turkish vessel, suffering minor damages but no crew member injuries.
The Greek boat was patrolling the sea area east of Lesvos island when the Turkish boat approached very closely, resulting in minor material damage to the Greek boat.
In January 2021 a Turkish Coast Guard vessel harassed a Greek fishing boat off the coast of the island of Kalymnos, not far from the Turkish coastline. The entire incident, which took place near Imia, the tiny rocky islet that was the site of a standoff in 1996, was caught on camera.
In a more serious incident that occurred in March 2020, a Greek Coast Guard vessel was rammed by a Turkish speedboat off the eastern Aegean island of Kos.
According to a video uploaded on Twitter, the Turkish vessel is seen approaching the Greek boat at speed. A Greek officer shouts to the rest of the crew that they have been hit at the stern.
He is heard shouting: “They broke our rails. We are in our [own waters] and they hit us. They damaged our stern.” The video was uploaded by journalist Liana Spyropoulou.
While everyone thinks its calm in the #Aegean because there are no refugee boats arriving in the islands, #Greece ‘s @HCoastGuard is being dangerously harassed by a Turkish vessel.
Exclusive footage obtained by @BILD shows what is really happening away from the media. #Turkey pic.twitter.com/KB2bosbWNO
— Liana Spyropoulou (@LSpyropoulou) March 11, 2020