Cyprus Mail

Nicosia and Athens monitor Turkish movements with drillship

Earlier in August, Turkey’s Energy Minister Fatih Donmez said that Turkish Petroleum’s Abdullhamid Han drillship would depart Tasucu port in August to carry out a drilling operation in the Mediterranean.

Nicosia and Athens are monitoring Turkish movements with the Abdulhamid Han drillship and have prepared actions, depending on the target for drilling in the Mediterranean, state broadcaster Cybc reported on Monday.

The news comes on the back of comments made by Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, who has now also announced the exit of the Turkish drillship, following earlier comments by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.

Erdogan, who was speaking at a meeting of Turkish ambassadors, said that Ankara is acting with the same goal in the Aegean, the eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea, but avoided referring to the specific exit point of the Turkish drilling rig.

To date, Turkey has not allowed any work to be done in our fields of competence without us, nor will we allow it from now on,” Erdogan said.

Information suggests that the drilling area will be announced in the coming hours.

According to information transmitted by the Cybc’s main news bulletin, the possible targets of the Turkish drillship extend from block 6 in Cyprus’ EEZ to the area near Kastelorizo.

The same sources and at a Foreign Ministry level have said that the main recipient of the démarches will be the European Union, which will be upgraded according to whether they will concern a possible provocation to a licensed plot, for how long and if there will be harassment of ships legally exploring in the Cypriot EEZ by drilling.

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