Nicosia condemned on Thursday Turkey’s policy to continue its illegal drilling operations in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), noting that Ankara is acting as the pirate of the Eastern Mediterranean, ignoring even the COVID-19 pandemic.
Invited by CNA to comment on the fact that Turkey issued on Wednesday an illegal NAVTEX for drilling operations in Cyprus’ EEZ by its drilling ship Yavuz from April 20 to July 18, and on statements by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu that Turkey will continue its drilling activities in the Eastern Mediterranean, Government Spokesman, Kyriakos Koushos said that Turkey not only continues its policy which worsens the already tense situation in the Eastern Mediterranean but also intensifies. And that, in a period that the whole world is facing the coronavirus pandemic and all states are trying to protect the health and safety of their citizens.
“Turkey continues its provocative behaviour which we are following with great concern, and we are taking all necessary measures towards all directions,” the spokesman noted, underlining that “we condemn Turkey’s actions and we continue in a consistent manner to implement our policy which is based on the international law and the sovereign rights of our country which must be respected by everyone.”
The spokesman said that “Turkey has been implementing a gunboat diplomacy, and has been acting as the pirate of the Eastern Mediterranean, breaching and violating the international law principles and interfering with the sovereign rights of third countries, including Cyprus.”
“We have all been witnessing a policy which worsens the already tense situation in the Eastern Mediterranean and this policy not only continues but is also intensified in a period that the whole world is facing the coronavirus pandemic and all states are trying to protect the health and safety of their citizens,” Koushos noted.
However, he concluded, Turkey continues to follow a policy that ignores even the pandemic and does not respect the difficulties which the states are facing.