Turkey will not allow the exploitation of gas reserves in the Turkish and north Cypriot waters of the eastern Mediterranean, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday November 4th.
The Eastern Mediterranean, believed to be rich in natural gas, has revived tensions between Turkey and Greece, the latter having a defence protection pact with the internationally recognised Greek Cypriot government, while the de facto “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” remains recognized only by Turkey.
Turkey and Cyprus have overlapping claims of marine jurisdiction and both plan to carry out exploratory drills this year.
Last month Turkey complained that a Greek frigate had harassed a Turkish exploration ship west of Cyprus. Greece denied the charge. Cyprus accused Turkey of stirring up tensions.