Bilgiç: Turkey will respond if GC side starts drilling activities
Date Added: 22 October 2021

The Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman Tanju Bİlgiç said on Thursday that Turkey will respond in kind if the Greek Cypriot administration resumes drilling activities in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Bilgiç, speaking during a press conference touched upon reports that the Greek Cypriot administration and Greece were preparing to issue a new NAVTEX to conduct surveying in areas that fell within the TRNC’s maritime jurisdiction areas.

Pointing out that the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo were taking steps aimed at escalating tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean by sending survey vessels to areas that fell within Turkey’s continental shelf, he said that such provocative activities will not go unanswered.

Reminding that the Greek Cypriot side announced that it will resume new drilling activities in November, Bilgiç said that Ankara would reciprocate if the Greek Cypriot side went ahead with its plans.

“If this happens we will definitely respond to protect the Turkish Cypriots’ rights. I openly state here that Turkey will continue to give the necessary response to these challenges. On the other hand, if the regional conference proposed by our President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for the fair and equitable sharing of hydrocarbon reserves in the Eastern Mediterranean could be realized then cooperation between the countries in the region would be possible. Turkey as a sovereign state can exercise its rights when necessary” the Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman concluded.