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Russian envoy slams EU sanctions against Turkey

"The only agency that is authorized by international law to impose sanctions against anybody is the UN Security Council," he said

MOSCOW, July 16./TASS/. The European Union is not authorized to impose sanctions against other subjects of international law, and that is why restrictions against Turkey are not legitimate, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the EU Vladimir Chizhov told Rossiya-24 television on Tuesday.

"The only agency that is authorized by international law to impose sanctions against anybody is the UN Security Council. That is why, everything that certain countries and in this case the European Union are doing is unilateral restrictive measures, unlawful by definition," he said.

On July 15, the European Union slapped sanctions on Ankara over drilling in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone where large deposits of natural gas had been discovered.

Ankara, which challenges the zone’s borders, dispatched its Fatih vessel to the area, stating that the drilling would continue until September 3.

On June 10, Cyprus authorized the arrest of the Turkish vessel’s crew. In spite of that, on July 4, Turkey sent the Yavuz vessel to the area.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated that Ankara was ready to protect the rights of Turkish Cypriots to the offshore deposits, even if it means utilizing the armed forces.