There is no end to the Turkish provocations against Greece, with Turkish officials dangerously ratcheting up tensions.

The Turkish President being in a difficult position on multiple internal fronts, has escalated the challenges dangerously in recent days, making extreme threats against Greece, while top officials, such as the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Cavuşoglu following suit.

The new narrative

Being constricted on all internal fronts the Turkish president is looking to show power but also to divert citizen interest from real problems. Internally, Mr. Erdoganis using Greece to create a new narrative, diverting attention from the sinking economy.

After the Greek PM’s visit to Washington, Erdogan turned “about face” staging a full-scale attack against Athens, with his ministers and the Turkish media raising the level of inflammatory rhetoric.

Erdogan’s latest message

“Your ancestors know very well. Do not try to relive it. The price will be heavy,” was the latest threat of the Turkish president on Sunday night against Greece and PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis personally. The Turkish media are toeing the line, while in an article in Hurriyet, it was claimed that “the Greek people must get rid of their rulers, as soon as possible, since they prepared for war and made satanic plans.”

Athens responds to Cavoşoglu’s proclivities

At the same time, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoglu continued the provocative rhetoric with a double blast against the Aegean islands and Cyprus. After his meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar, Çavuşoglu said that Greece is demagogic and “a cry-baby” in the international community on the issue of the Aegean, since it is always claiming that “Turkey will attack us.”

“We did not expect the Greek prime minister to say kind words about us in the European Union or Congress,” Çavuşoglu said, adding that many meetings were held on the situation in the wider region without the presence of Ankara, which “did not affect Turkey at all.” Çavuşoglu also castigated Greece’s military exercises with other countries as being futile, staged just to anger Ankara.

Athens’s response to the new crescendo of Turkish provocations was immediate. Greece has rejected all Turkish unilateral allegations with legal arguments based on international law, responding with maps and letters to all the Turkish accusations.

Fake news and “false flags”

Turkey, in addition to provocative actions and inflammatory statements, is also spreading fake news, accusing Greek authorities of opening fire on migrants trying to cross the border in Evros, resulting in the death of an Afghan man.

The DHA news agency reports that the incident took place in the village of Alibey on the border with Edirne. However, Greek police categorically denied the claim, noting that there was no report of a similar incident at the border, while the Minister of Civil Protection, Takis Theodorikakos, spoke of fake news and accused Turkey of having a sordid past in instrumentalizing illegal immigrants.

At a time when the Turks are escalating provocations against Greece with daily references to historical, military, political and bellicose issues concerning the Greek islands in the Aegean, the rhetoric and some moves from the Turkish side seem extremely suspicious, like the one with alleged shootings in Evros. Some fear that these may be “false flag” operations to claim justification for some possible actions by Ankara.

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