The Turkish provocations don’t seem to end. In a non-paper Ankara distributed to all European Union member states, with the exception of Cyprus which it “does not recognize as a country” (sic), Turkey warns the EU not to interfere in the issue of the Cyprus EEZ, threatening that this will deteriorate the Greek-Turkish relations and the prospects for a solution to the Cyprus problem.
According to the document published by the Cypriot newspaper “Phileleftheros”, Ankara states that any decisions against its activities in the Eastern Mediterranean “would be a mistake”.
According to the Turkish side, it would not be “wise” for the EU to act as a “court” for maritime zones and borders and blamed Brussels for having already created the impression of being a “biased factor in the region”.
Indeed, Turkey believes that a European decision against its EEZ activity will cause more damage to the “weakened image” already emitted by the EU. as a “biased actor in the region”.
According to the Turkish side, the EU’s stance “further discourages efforts towards the settlement of the Cyprus issue, as well as worsening Turkish-Greek relations”.
“The drilling area is on our continental shelf”
Turkey reiterates its claims that its activities in the eastern Mediterranean are based on allegedly legitimate rights stemming from international law.
“The drilling area lies within our continental shelf registered with the UN back in 2004”, the authors of the document writes, adding that all the other islands, including Cyprus, can not generate full EEZ and that this would cause distortions the equitable delimitation under international law.
Ankara repeats the proposal to set up a joint Energy Committee with the participation of Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots, noting that “otherwise, we will resolutely continue to protect our Continental Shelf rights. Moreover, as long as the Greek Cypriot side does not cease its unilateral hydrocarbon activities or fails to cooperate with the Turkish Cypriots with a view to establishing a joint decision-making mechanism on hydrocarbons, we are also determined to protect the Turkish Cypriot’s rights offshore resources in the region”.