The Turkish occupation of Cyprus and Ankara's policy, which remain a threat to stability and prosperity in the region, was raised by Senator Robert Menendez during the Annual Economist New York Mediterranean Business Summit on Tuesday.
"Despite being an ally in NATO, Turkey is challenging Greek sovereignty with provocative overflights in the Aegean. Violations of Greek airspace with fighters are unacceptable behavior by any country. Turkey is undermining NATO unity at a critical time," Menendez said.
"I find it very difficult to agree to sell other military equipment to Turkey" -US Senator Bob Menendez
He noted that "we need to make it clear to Turkey that there will be consequences for violations of international law and overflights in the Aegean".
"I find it very difficult to agree to sell other military equipment to Turkey", he pointed out.
Menendez criticized Erdogan's attitude towards Israel, which he called "a nation of terrorists while the country tries to defend itself from the attacks".
In addition, the Senator said that Ankara "at the end of the day will remove the obstacles to the accession of Sweden and Finland to NATO".
Menendez noted the good cooperation between Congress and President Biden with the aim of lifting the arms embargo in Cyprus, the ultimate goal being the modernizing of its defense system.
"Cyprus has proven to be a worthy partner," he said, adding that the USA is committed to working with Greece, Cyprus and Israel.
Referring to the recent meeting of the Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis with the American President Joe Biden and his speech before Congress, Menendez said that “it was a historical speech with great influence by a Greek leader. I was delighted to see Democrats and Republicans both applauding him."
Regarding the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Menendez stressed the importance of alliances based on common values of freedom, democracy and the rule of law, emphasizing that Vladimir Putin would only de-escalate his aggression when he felt the economic stalemate was suffocating his country.
The US Senator referred to the goal of turning the Eastern Mediterranean into an energy center for the energy autonomy of Europe and independence from Russian energy reserves, highlighting the tripartite cooperation between Greece, Cyprus and Israel, with special reference to the role of Alexandroupolis and the LNG sector. "If it is economically viable, it has to be examined. Personally, however, I am a hearty supporter of Renewable Energy Sources."