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FACTDROP: Cyprus Drills Offshore Despite Turkish Warning


Cyprus Drills Offshore Despite Turkish Warning

Πηγή: Greek Reporter
Sep. 19 2011

Turkey threatened Monday to start oil and gas exploration “very soon” and under naval escort in the eastern Mediterranean, after the Greek Cypriots said they had already started their own operations.
“We will start this within our exclusive economic zone very soon, possibly this week,” Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a news conference despite a call to desist from the European Union which Turkey hopes to join.

Erdogan also warned that the region “will be under the constant surveillance of Turkey’s frigates, assault boats and the Turkish air force.”
“This exclusive zone is disputed,” he said, adding that Turkey had conveyed its complaints that what the Greek Cypriot government — recognised internationally but not by Ankara — had been doing was inappropriate.
The Greek Cypriot energy chief said Monday that US energy firm Noble had started exploratory drilling for gas off the southern coast of the island.

Solon Kassinis told the Cyprus News Agency that Noble had begun drilling Sunday night from its Aphrodite platform inside the island’s exclusive economic zone.
Turkey’s Energy Minister Taner Yildiz earlier called on Cyprus to hold off “immediately” on the planned drilling, failing which Turkey would retaliate.
He said Ankara had signed an agreement with a Norwegian company for seismic drilling off the island, but he declined to name it.
“First of all, we will start exploration with one vessel,” Yildiz said.

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