Cyprus Summons UK Official Over Turkish Drilling Rights Flap

FILE - Cyprus' president Nicos Anastasiades speaks to the media at the presidential palace in divided capital Nicosia, Cyprus, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

Cyprus’ Foreign Ministry wants British High Commissioner Stephen Lillie to explain his country’s position that indicated Cyprus should not go ahead with drilling for oil and gas off the divided island.

The United Kingdom’s Minister for Europe Alan Duncan told Parliament he met with the Turkish Ambassador and said in line with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, exploratory drilling should not proceed in any area in which sovereignty is under dispute.”

He didn’t mention that Turkey doesn’t recognize that law nor parts of Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) where it has sent drilling ships to proceed, with foreign companies licensed by the legitimate government also doing so in nearby waters.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said Duncan’s remarks were “’unacceptable,” and came as the European Union – to which the UK now still belongs until set to exit later this year – has backed Cyprus’ right to license companies to hunt for energy.

Anastasiades had offered to share any potentially lucrative revenues with the Turkish-Cypriot side that has unlawfully occupied the northern third since 1974 but that wasn’t enough for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

He wants Turkish-Cypriots to also take part in the licensing process and has sent two Turkish ships into the EEZ, one of which was less than 40 nautical miles west of Cyprus and approximately 83 nautical miles from the Turkish coast.

Anastasiades has described Turkey’s drilling bid inside waters where ethnically-split Cyprus has exclusive economic rights as a “new invasion” and has rallied support from fellow EU.

Turkey said its actions abide by international laws it doesn’t recognize otherwise and it’s drilling inside its continental shelf, creating the disputed sovereignty challenges.


(Material from the Associated Press was used in this report)

1 Comment

  1. Anastasides… the poodle of EU and U.S. led Nato… who seems to be upset over British support of Turkey… which has been consistent since 1974…and who are the number one champion for Turkish entry into the EU, but continues to allow the British to make Cyprus just another aircraft carrier of the Royal Navy … allowing them to launch unapproved criminal wars against Iraq, libya, Syria, Yemen etc etc by the people of Cyprus which could subject the people of Cyprus to catastrophic retaliation by the many victims of their crimes against humanity bombings!

    Anastasides the coward and traitor Tsipras and Mistotakis .to all Greeks ..should remove themselves from their positions…and have a referendum for the unification of Greece and Cyprus …as one nation
    Close the British Bases….. and do what the British , U.S. Turkish mobsters dread the most … a United Greece and Cyprus …under one new government which enhances the ability of Greece and Cyprus to work to gether under govenments who respect our religious, cultural , language, and human rights history of Greeks!

    Cypriot have only two choices…be ruled and controlled by White Supremacist of U.S, British , and Turkish Nato occupiers and rulers., or be ruled by Greeks!

    It is clear…that Anastasiades and his ruling party prefer to be ruled by foreign countries …just to keep his job!

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