A Russian warship has fired warning shots at a Turkish boat as the two vessels threatened to collide.
The incident occurred on Sunday 22 kilometers (13 miles) north of the Greek island of Limnos in the Aegean Sea, according to a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry.
Relations between Russia and Turkey have been tense since a Russian jet operating in Syria was shot down by the Turkish military on November 24, killing one pilot. Another Russian soldier died during a rescue mission that retrieved the surviving crew member.
Speaking to Turkish media Sunday, the country’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said more information was needed from the crew aboard the Turkish fishing boat before a proper response could be issued.
“We are not on the side of escalating tension, we are on the side of de-escalating tense situations through dialogue,” Cavusoglu said, according to the DHA news agency.
Earlier this month, a Russian serviceman was filmed on the deck of a naval ship holding what appeared to be a rocket launcher as a Russian warship passed through Istanbul. A treaty between the countries allows Russia’s Black Sea fleet access to the Aegean Sea by way of the Bosphorus, which bisects the Turkish city.
“For a Russian soldier to display a rocket launcher or something similar while passing on a Russian warship is a provocation,” Cavusoglu told reporters, according to Turkey’s Hurriyet newspaper.
“If we perceive a threatening situation, we will give the necessary response.”