Turkey will begin drilling operations for natural gas and oil in the Eastern Mediterranean, in an area in which South Cyprus is carrying out drilling activities.
Outlining Turkish foreign policy, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told journalists that Turkey’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) overlapped with a part of the South Cyprus’ EEC, but not with bloc 10, where American Exxon Mobil was currently drilling.
“Therefore, we will also start drilling now in these areas. In January our second drilling vessel will arrive”, he said, adding that Turkey’s second vessel would have drilled in the Black Sea, but for convenience, they decided to drill in these areas (the Eastern Mediterranean).
Cavusoglu said that Turkey was not against the drilling operations which were being held in the region. Its only concern was to secure and protect the TRNC’s rights to the revenues from the natural gas and oil, he said.
He added: “In order to avoid congestion we will also start drilling in these areas, in the areas of our EEZ which we have registered in the UN. And there are also areas to which we have been invited by the TRNC. There is a bloc starting from the northern part of the TRNC, from Karpaz and goes north towards Turkey and comes down again. We have also our own EEZ”.