EU warns Turkey about Mediterranean gas exploration plans
After Erdogan vows to start searching waters, European Union has urged Turkey to drop plans to drill for oil and gas around Cyprus, saying such exploration was illegal.
“Concrete steps towards creating an environment conducive to dialogue in good faith are needed. The intention by Turkey to launch further exploration and drilling activities in the wider region goes, regrettably, in the opposite direction,” EU foreign policy spokesman Peter Stano stated.
Greece says the deal fails to take into account the island of Crete, while Turkey has already upset Cyprus by sending ships to search for oil and gas off the divided island.
Erdogan has said it is “no longer legally possible” for any search and drilling activities or a pipeline without Libya or Turkey’s approval.
“The international law of the sea, the principle of good neighbourly relations and the sovereignty and sovereign rights over the maritime zones of all Member States have to be respected,” the EU statement said. Possible sanctions could be discussed as early as Monday when the bloc’s foreign ministers meet in Brussels, officials said.
Maritime Business World