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Turkey slams Greek Cyprus over reported arrest warrants

June 10, 2019 at 7:42 pm

Turkey on Monday slammed the Greek Cypriot administration’s reported decision to issue arrest warrants for crew members of the Turkish-flagged drillship Fatih, reports Anadolu Agency.

Any such warrants are “null and void” for us, Foreign Ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy said in a statement.

“Nobody should doubt that we will give the necessary response if it dares [to do so],” Aksoy said.

His remarks came after the Greek Cypriot administration reportedly issued arrest warrants for crew members of the drillship Fatih and officials of companies cooperating with the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO).

READ: Erdogan says other countries cannot extract gas in Turkish, Northern Cyprus waters

“We will also initiate the necessary counter-legal processes together with relevant institutions,” he added.

Aksoy also stressed that Greek Cypriot efforts to halt Turkey’s work on its own continental shelf using such futile methods “will yield no results.” He added:

Turkey will resolutely continue its petrol and natural gas exploration and drilling as planned in order to protect the rights of both its own continental shelf and the rights of Turkish Cypriots, who are equal partners of the island.

Speaking separately, ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party spokesman Omer Celik said: “We will not allow the Greek Cypriot administration to usurp the rights of the Turkish Cypriots.”

“The news that the Greek Cypriot administration issuing arrest warrants for the crew of our Fatih drillship and officials of the companies cooperating with TPAO is a clear provocation,” Celik said.

“Ignoring the Turkish Cypriots and trying to usurp their rights is vain politics,” he added.

READ: Turkey warns companies against energy exploration with Greek Cypriot government

Devlet Bahceli, head of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), also condemned the reported Greek Cypriot move as “unlawful.”

Turkey has the strength and competence to overcome “barbaric” and “anti-peace moves” in the eastern Mediterranean, he added.