French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle cruises in the Mediterranean sea, March 7, 2019 © Reuters / Jean-Paul Pelissier

BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:00 A.M.) – The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has announced an investigation into Paris’s allegations of a Turkish naval ship’s harassment of a French frigate in the Mediterranean.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday, according to Reuters news agency:

“The alliance will conduct an investigation into French allegations that the Turkish navy did not respond to a call from a member country requesting inspection of a ship in the Mediterranean earlier this month.”

“A number of allies touched on the incident (at sea) in the Mediterranean during the meeting,” Stoltenberg said at a news conference after a meeting of NATO defense ministers.

The French Ministry of Defense said on Wednesday that “a  French ship participating in a NATO mission in the Mediterranean, has recently been subjected to a ‘very violent’ maneuver by the Turkish frigates.”

The French official accused the Turkish navy of harassing a French warship carrying out an alliance mission.

A French Defense Ministry official said that NATO “should not bury its head in the sand regarding Turkey’s recent behavior towards its members.”

France and Turkey have been at odds over a number of issues in the last eight months, including Ankara’s military operations in Syria and Libya.

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