NICOSIA, October 6. /TASS/. Turkey’s provocative actions in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) pose a threat to prospects for the success of talks on Cyprus settlement, Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said on Monday.
“We consider Turkey’s dispatching of its research vessel to the south of the island, where the Italian consortium ENI and South Korea’s KOGAS are conducting the drilling, the very serious development of events,” Kasoulides said.
Fruitful talks cannot continue “under such conditions of provocation,” he said.
On Friday, October 3, Turkey released the so-called navigation telex (NAVTEX) where it said the Barbaros research vessel would carry out seismic survey in the Mediterranean for natural gas field exploration from October 20 to November 30. At present, Italy’s ENI is making exploratory drilling for natural gas in the EEZ in compliance with the concession agreement with the Cypriot government. But Turkey does not recognize the Republic of Cyprus and ignores the existing maritime borders in the East Mediterranean.
The US Noble Energy discovered substantial natural gas deposits on the shelf of Cyprus in 2011. The Cypriot government signed an agreement on the exploration and development of hydrocarbon resources with the ENI consortium and KOGAS, as well as with France’s Total.