Creating new perspectives since 2009

Turkey's drill ship begins operations off Cyprus 

November 15, 2019 at 10:46 am

Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay in Cernobbia, Italy on 6 September 2019 [Muhammet Fatih Oğraş/Anadolu Agency]

The Turkish oil-and-gas drilling ship Fatih has started its operations off the coast of northeastern Cyprus, Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay said today, despite warnings from the European Union for Ankara to stand down, Reuters reported.

On Monday, the EU Foreign Affairs Council adopted a framework for restrictive measures against Turkey over its drilling activities in the eastern Mediterranean.

Turkey criticised the decision and said it would not cease drilling because it is operating on its own continental shelf or areas where Turkish Cypriots have rights.

Another Turkish drillship, Yavuz, is off the west coast of Cyprus.

Earlier in October the US warned Turkey against drilling off the Cypriot coast saying:  We’ve told the Turks that illegal drilling is unacceptable and we’ll continue to take diplomatic actions to … ensure that lawful activity takes place.”

READ: Cyprus buys Israeli military hardware