Turkey’s drillship, the Yavuz, is due to commence its second drilling operation sometime over the next few days, Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Donmez said on Monday.
He did not specify the location of the ship’s next drilling site.
“Today, with four ships, our flag is flying in every part of the eastern Mediterranean. Our teams are working with great dedication day and night to deliver the good news to our nation,”
Donmez was quoted as saying to university students in Turkey.
“The Yavuz will start drilling at its new location in the coming days…the Fatih [drillship] also went below four thousand metres. Each time our drills pierce the seabed marks a milestone for Turkey’s bright future.”
Last week the Yavuz, which had been operating off the Karpas peninsula, returned for maintenance to the Turkish port of Mersin.
The vessel was dispatched by Turkey to the Karpas area in late June and was said to have started drilling in July.
It is the second drillship sent by Turkey to Cyprus’ sea area; the Fatih has been carrying out drilling off Paphos since May 3.
Turkey disputes Cyprus ownership of fossil fuels in the area, arguing that Turkish Cypriots are entitled to a share of the resources. Ankara also has its own claims in the area.