Turkey test-fired a locally made, short-range ballistic missile, dubbed Tayfun, which means “typhoon” in Turkish, over the Black Sea in October. The missile can hit targets at a distance of 561 kilometres in 456 seconds, according to Turkey.
“You say ‘Tayfun’ and they’re scared, they say it’ll hit Athens,” Erdoğan said. “Yeah, of course it’ll hit it. If you don’t stay calm — if you try to send weapons you got from the US to the islands — a country like Turkey certainly won’t go around picking pears. It has to do something.”
Turkey is increasingly frustrated by what it sees as a growing Greek military build-up on islands close to its coastline and Western military support to fellow Nato member Greece, with which Ankara has long-running territorial conflicts. These frictions have escalated in recent years as Turkey mobilised its navy to claim rights over potential hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean.
Greece has repeatedly called on Turkey to stop questioning its sovereignty over the Dodecanese — a group of islands off the Turkish coast including Rhodes and Kos — that were ceded to Greece by Italy following World War 2.