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Greece Hires Top US Law Firm to Cancel ‘Turkaegean’ Trademark

Greece Turkey Turkaegean
Greece says that the term Turkaegean misappropriates the Aegean Sea. Credit: Greek PM’s Press Office

Greece has hired a top US law firm to cancel the efforts by Turkey to use the “Turkaegean” trademark in order to attract tourists from the US.

A report says that Greece has hired Steptoe & Johnson law firm, which specializes in so-called high-stakes litigation involving trade and border disputes.

Athens regards as a positive development that the US Patent and Trade Office in February asked for more details in order to consider the patent process. A final ruling probably won’t be issued until 2025.

The EU Intellectual Property Office allowed Turkey to trademark the term in December 2021, and it will remain valid until July 2031, allowing the country to use the phrase in future campaigns.

Turkaegean campaign highlights ancient Greek monuments

Turkey is using the term “Turkaegean” or “Turkish Aegean,” when highlighting ancient Greek monuments and archaeological sites in its tourism campaign launched in the Summer of 2022.

The west coast of Turkey, which includes Izmir, Ephesus, Ayvalik, Pergamon and many well-known historical sites with a rich Greek history, is one of the seven major regions of the country.

In its campaign, Turkey says that the “Aegean Region of Türkiye offers you beautiful landscapes, dazzling coastlines, immaculate beaches, pine woods and olive groves; perfect for nature lovers, photographers, history buffs and adrenaline junkies. Many popular holiday villages and fishing harbors are scattered up and down the coast.”

Until today, its predominant name was the “Aegean Region.” However, the term “Turkaegean” is now used in English while “Turkiye Egéene” is used in French and, in German, “Türkische Ägäis” is used. These all mean “Turkish Aegean.”

Most experts believe that the name of the Aegean archipelago derives from the ancient Greek word αἶγες, meaning waves.

According to Greek mythology, the Aegean Sea owes its name to the King of Athens, Aigeas (Aegeas). King Minos ‘Minoas’ of Crete—in order to punish the Athenians who had killed his son, Androgeo—declared war on Athens and was victorious.

The Aegean Sea has been historically important, especially in regard to the civilization of Ancient Greece, which comprised the area around the coast of the Aegean and the Aegean islands.

The Aegean Sea is an elongated embayment of the Mediterranean Sea and covers about 214,000 square kilometres (83,000 sq mi) in area, measuring about 670 kilometres (420 mi) in longitude and 390 kilometres (240 mi) in latitude. The sea’s maximum depth is 3,639 metres (11,939 ft) at a point west of Karpathos

See the campaign of Turkey with Greek antiquities, seafood, and bouzouki called “Turkaegean: Coast of Happiness”:

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