Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu wrote a letter to UN Security Council permanent member states and EU’s foreign ministers, regarding his country’s gas drillings in Cyprus’ EEZ, which Turkey disputes.
Çavuşoğlu said the EU’s support for the Republic of Cyprus “under the guise of membership solidarity conflicts with international law,” Anadolu Agency reported on Friday.
“In the letter, Çavuşoğlu underscored that Turkey had stated its position on the East Mediterranean at the UN since 2004. He also pointed out that Turkey would not accept unilateral EEZ (exclusive economic zone) claims of Greek Cypriots,” the news agency said.
Referring to statements from other countries, who expressed their support to the sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus in its EEZ, Çavuşoğlu said that third parties should not take sides in disputes over maritime jurisdictions.
Also on Friday, in an event in the occupied north, Turkish vice president Fuat Oktay said that “everyone should accept that Turkey and Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus cannot be excluded from energy equation in the region.”
He added that the current status quo is unsustainable. and that the Fatih drillship’s activities in the west of Cyprus is a proof of Turkey’s decisiveness on the issue.
Turkey’s new drilling ship Yavuz will carry out similar activities in the Eastern Mediterranean in the following period, he concluded.
Ankara has issued a navigational telex, announcing its intention to start drilling off Cyprus until September 3. The Turkish drill ship Fatih is located almost 40 nautical miles west of the Akamas peninsula and 83 nautical miles from the Turkish coast. The area falls within the EEZ and continental shelf of the Republic of Cyprus.
Turkey contests the Republic of Cyprus’ sovereignty in its EEZ.