Turkish Minister for Power and Pure Assets Fatih Donmez introduced that Turkey wouldn’t stop drilling in Greece’s and Cyprus’ unique financial zones (EEZ) on Monday.
Turkey’s exercise within the Japanese Mediterranean has been a permanent sore spot for the three nations, and has drawn consideration from the broader worldwide group.
Turkey to proceed drilling off coast of Greece, Cyprus
Regardless of Donmez’s announcement, analysts imagine it’s unlikely that Turkey will resume drilling in Greece and Cyprus’ territorial waters very quickly. Fairly, it’s potential that Turkey is holding this trump card shut so as to have the ability to retaliate if conferences and phone between the 2 nations and the wider European Union break down.
Throughout his dialogue of Turkey’s drilling exercise, Donmez additionally talked about the Greek island of Kastellorizo.
Kastellorizo has been a source of tension up to now, with Turkey having declared a number of occasions that the jap island is too far from Greece and too near Turkey to be thought-about Greek. Turkey has violated Greece’s unique financial zone surrounding Kastellorizo quite a few occasions and, in response to Donmez, it isn’t afraid to do that once more.
The US Ambassador to Athens, Geoffrey Pyatt, has condemned Turkey’s actions with regard to Kastellorizo up to now.
“I’ve additionally made a degree on many events and I’ll make it once more right this moment, that america adheres to the principal of worldwide maritime regulation that islands, together with Kastellorizo, have precisely the identical continental shelf and EEZ rights as does any mainland territory,” mentioned Pyatt in July 2020, talking to the Athens Macedonia Information Company (AMNA).
Turkey continues to deny that Kastellorizo has the identical rights to an EEZ as the remainder of Greece.
“Now we have performed about eight drilling actions within the Mediterranean over three years,” mentioned Donmez. He additionally highlighted that three of those actions befell in Turkish-occupied northern Cyprus, which the Turkish authorities sees as rightfully theirs to take advantage of.
“What we have now mentioned from the start is that we have now our personal rights and pursuits in accordance with worldwide maritime regulation in these areas, so there is no such thing as a likelihood of us backing off,” Donmez added.
Turkey a “actual concern” to the Mediterranean
This is not the first time there have been points with Turkey’s ongoing provocations within the Mediterranean in 2021.
On March 11, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed his concern for Turkey’s provocative actions in opposition to Greece, together with its violations of the airspace of different nations, which was ongoing all throughout 2020.
Testifying earlier than the Home of Representatives International Affairs Committee, Blinken mentioned that america has spoken up about actions that violate worldwide regulation within the Japanese Mediterranean — which incorporates Turkey’s actions in opposition to Greece.
“Now we have seemed with actual concern during the last yr and naturally extra not too long ago, at among the actions taken within the Japanese Mediterranean, notably by Turkey, by way of varied claims,” Blinken mentioned.
“It is rather vital that the US stands up and engages in advancing stability sovereignty and territorial integrity of all events in Japanese Mediterranean and insists that any disputes that come up shall be resolved peacefully, diplomatically, not militarily, not by provocative actions,” he added.
“Now we have referred to as out actions, including by Turkey, that violate worldwide regulation or commitments as NATO ally and that features provocative actions in opposition to Greece like violations of airspace,” the Secretary of State declared.