The deterioration followed relations with the departure of a Turkish ship, the Oruc Reis, earlier Monday to work south of the Greek island of Kastelorizo, off Turkey’s southern coast.
The Greek Foreign Ministry described the development as a “major escalation” and a “direct threat to peace in the region”.
Ankara withdrew the same ship from the disputed waters in the Eastern Mediterranean last month to “allow diplomacy” ahead of the EU summit at which Cyprus called for sanctions against Turkey.
“Turkey has proved it lacks confidence. All those who believed Turkey had meant everything it said before the European summit on October 1
Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Donmez wrote on Twitter that Oruc Reis has weighed anchor after undergoing maintenance.
“We will continue to research, dig and defend our rights,” he wrote.
Relations between Greece and Turkey are complicated by a number of disputes, from jurisdiction in the Mediterranean to ethnically divided Cyprus.
Tensions in Cyprus
The situation in Cyprus was fueled last week by Turkish Cypriots in the north, who partially opened a seaside resort abandoned by Greek Cypriots during the 1974 war.
As part of growing tensions, about 200 people waving a large Greek flag exploded through a checkpoint near Varosha in eastern Cyprus on Sunday night, trying to cross to the Turkish Cypriot side of the island.
Video footage shows a police cordon with limited personnel leading to the UN-controlled buffer zone, setting fire to rockets and chanting “Cyprus is Greek”.
At a summit in early October, the EU said it would punish Turkey if it continued to operate in the region, and that sanctions could be imposed immediately in December. Ankara has said such a warning has strained ties.
Greek government spokesman Pezas said the EU should not wait two months before taking action.
“Turkey did the exact opposite of what the European Council was looking for … So the only issue here is to activate more drastic solutions so that Turkey can feel more sticky and less carrot this time,” he said. Petsas.