Turkey Sending Energy Research Ships into Cypriot Waters

NICOSIA – Stepping up provocations, Turkey said it would send energy research vessels into waters off Cyprus, an area where Ankara warned international companies licensed by the island’s legitimate government not to drill for oil and gas.

Turkey on Sept. 6 issued two navigational telexes (NAVTEX) declaring it would unlawfully be in the area of  Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) southwest of Paphos, as it has before with no action by Cyprus nor the international community.

Cyprus’ government – which has no power in the northern third of the island occupied by Turkey and its army since an unlawful invasion in 1974 – said the NAVTEX orders were unlawful, as it has before, but nothing has been done to stop Turkey.

Despite recent Turkish activities around Cyprus, the government said that gas exploration in Block 11 has not been impacted. Turkey also has demanded a share of any energy finds in waters where it has no rights and as it does not recognize Cyprus’s right to explore for gas in its EEZ, nor recognizes Cyprus at all.

That tension came as US energy giant ExxonMobil said it would drill in the area in the second half of 2018. Speaking at a presentation in Nicosia, ExxonMobil’s Vice President for Europe, Russia and the Caspian, Tristan Aspray, said that “preparations for two exploration wells are targeted to begin in the second half of 2018 and future steps are dependent on exploration results.”

He was at a joint press conference with Cypriot Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis and added that added that 3D seismic data acquisition had been completed, geophysical data was being finalized and drilling contracts and shaft design are in progress for the project, the Chinese news agency Xinhua said.

ExxonMobil paid no attention to Turkey’s earlier warnings that international companies shouldn’t operate off Cyprus.

Cypriot sources said the agency that Turkish naval ships carried out a half-day exercise using live munition southwest of Cyprus close to where Exxon-Mobil obtained a concession for drilling.
Aspray said there’s an opportunity to find possible hydrocarbon deposits off the coast.

He said that ExxonMobil, in association with Qatar Petroleum which is a partner in the project, would participate in building a natural gas liquefaction plant in Cyprus if gas finds warranted it.
Aspray also said that the proximity of the Cypriot EEZ to the mammoth Egyptian Zohr gas discovery offered significant exploration possibilities.

But he cautioned and said there is “still considerable uncertainty about drilling results, as geology can change significantly over short distances.”

Cypriot Energy Minister Lakkotrypis said that Cyprus will soon announce the results of a drilling which was started almost two months ago by French Total, in association with Italian ENI, in a nearby Cypriot block.


NICOSIA, Cyprus — A Cyprus health official said a second elderly person has died from heatstroke after a weeklong heatwave that baked the east Mediterranean island nation with reportedly record temperatures for the month of June.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


1 of 2 Abducted Louisiana Children is Found Dead in Mississippi after Their Mother is Killed

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A Louisiana woman was found dead in her home Thursday, and her two young daughters were abducted and found hours later in Mississippi — one dead and the other alive, police said.

JERUSALEM  — Israel's military announced on Sunday that it would pause fighting throughout daytime hours along a route in southern Gaza to free up a backlog of humanitarian aid deliveries destined for desperate Palestinians enduring a humanitarian crisis sparked by the war, now in its ninth month.

NICOSIA, Cyprus — A Cyprus health official said a second elderly person has died from heatstroke after a weeklong heatwave that baked the east Mediterranean island nation with reportedly record temperatures for the month of June.

WASHINGTON  — Donald Trump on Saturday night suggested President Joe Biden “should have to take a cognitive test," only to confuse who administered the test to him in the next sentence.

On the dawn of Monday, June 10, the day after the European Parliament elections, a different Europe appeared, with a furrowed and darkened face indicating that the cycle of prosperity and political stability has ended and another rather vicious cycle has begun, foreshadowing adventures in the political, social, and economic realm.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.