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Israel must prepare to confront Turkey in Mediterranean, says journalist

An aerial photo shows Turkish-flagged drill ship Fatih' continue offshore drilling operations in company with Turkish battleship and a helicopter in the west of the Island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea on July 11, 2019 [Turkish National Defence Ministry / Handout - Anadolu Agency]
An aerial photo shows Turkish-flagged drill ship Fatih' continue offshore drilling operations in company with Turkish battleship and a helicopter in the west of the Island of Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea on 11 July 2019 [Turkish National Defence Ministry / Handout - Anadolu Agency]

The current conflict over the Mediterranean gas fields is sparking real power struggles between Israel, Egypt, Turkey, Russia and Libya, Israeli journalist warned yesterday, noting that it requires an “Israeli navy interference”.

“In 2015, a number of senior Israeli military intelligence officers asked me for information on Daesh activities in Syria and Iraq,” Tzur Shezaf said in an article on Ynet News. “I told them [Israeli officers] at the time that Daesh was a futile threat, and was not posing a major threat to Israel,” Shezaf noted.

He went on to warn Israeli officials of what he described as a “real threat to Israel and its interests,” pointing to Turkey.

“Turkey has become the strongest army among NATO countries and the second in the European continent after the Russian army,” Shezaf continued.

“The Turkish influence has become significant in Libya for years, especially over the last few months.”

READ: What are the consequences of Turkish boots on the ground in Libya? 

“The ongoing Libyan conflict is not only over gas and oil resources, but also to control regional waters, because Libya is located opposite Turkey, and the Turks believe that the Israeli-Egyptian-Greek-Cypriot gas pipelines penetrate their territorial waters,” Shezan explained.

“With all the regional conflicts taking place across the Middle East, Israel has to strengthen its naval weapon, with its primary mission to protect its territorial waters, making use of its alliance with Egypt, Greece and Cyprus,” the Israeli columnist concluded.

On 27 November, Ankara and Libya’s UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) signed two separate pacts: one on military cooperation and the other on maritime boundaries of countries in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Greece and Cyprus, which have long had maritime and territorial disputes with Turkey, say the accord is void and violates maritime laws.

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