05:09 GMT26 November 2020
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    NATO has recently sent its naval forces to the Aegean Sea to monitor migration flows from Turkey to Greece and other European states.

    However, it remains unclear how NATO warships are going to carry out any activities in the area given the fact that several Aegean islands are demilitarized and the presence of any kind of a military patrol there is strictly prohibited.

    First of all, it concerns the islands located near Turkey, such as Rhodes and Lesbos.

    "NATO ships will not be able to enter there, even for training purposes. Therefore, in my view, the hastily adopted NATO ‘Aegean plan' is ill-conceived and impractical," political expert, Dr. Celalettin Yavuz said in an interview with Radio Sputnik.

    The situation is complicated by the fact that there are serious differences between the two NATO members — Turkey and Greece — on the delimitation of maritime zones in the Aegean waters.

    According to the expert, it is still unclear under whose command NATO ships will carry out their tasks — under the leadership of the command center in the Turkish Izmir or that in Athens in Greece.

    The expert argued that there are several preconditions essential to stop the migration inflow to Europe.

    "In order to limit the illegal migration to Europe from the Aegean Sea it is first necessary to prevent a new wave of refugees coming from Syria to Turkey and, secondly, to fight against the illegal entry of refugees into Greece from Turkey. In the Aegean Sea, we are witnessing terrible tragedies and are facing fraudulent smuggling schemes," the expert said.

    Earlier, German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to discuss cooperation with regard to the current refugee crisis.

    The EU border agency Frontex has registered over 1.83 million illegal border crossings in 2015, in contrast to some 283,000 in 2014.


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