Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades said on Saturday that he expects to be informed during the next days about the discussion the German Chancellor Angela Merkel had on Friday with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during their meeting in Turkey.
Anastasiades asked on Thursday the German Chancellor, during a telephone conversation they had, to convey a message to the President of Turkey, for the immediate termination of Turkish illegal activities in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone, while calling on Turkey to conform with the relevant European Council decisions and conclusions.
“We agreed with Merkel during our telephone conversation that she would convey messages and it seems that she did so.”
“We agreed (with Merkel) during our telephone conversation that she would convey messages and it seems that she did so. I expect to be informed (about the discussion) during the next days as soon as she returns,” from her visit to Turkey, he added.
Replying to questions, the President said that Turkey’s activities have caused the crisis in the wider region. “They are already in bloc 8 (of Cyprus’ EEZ) and proceed in a provocative way, defying the international law, to drillings,” he noted.
Turkey has dispatched drillship Yavuz to conduct a drilling operation off the south of the island of Cyprus, which has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks for a Cyprus settlement have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.
“I expect to be informed about the discussion during the next days as soon as she returns from her visit to Turkey.”
The Cyprus government has condemned Turkey’s newly planned illegal drilling within the Exclusive Economic Zone and continental shelf of the Republic of Cyprus, noting that Turkey, provocatively ignoring the repeated calls by the international community and the European Union, to terminate its illegal activities in Cyprus’ EEZ, is now attempting to carry out a “new illegal drilling in the southern EEZ/continental shelf of Cyprus, inside exploration block 8, which was duly licensed to the European companies ENI and TOTAL”.
“This new attempted drilling constitutes yet another flagrant violation of the sovereign rights and jurisdiction of the Republic of Cyprus under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as the relevant customary International Law, and completely disregards the international EEZ delimitation agreements already in force between Cyprus and Israel, and Cyprus and Egypt, respectively,” a statement issued by the Presidency of Cyprus has said.