Turkey needs stronger intelligence due to the “developments” in the East Mediterranean, the Aegean and the Black Sea, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday, speaking at the launching ceremony of a new spy ship in Istanbul.
“I believe that the Ufuk corvette will fill a big hole in today's world where preventive intelligence, signal intelligence in particular, has gained vital importance. The Ufuk corvette will be Turkey's eyes and ears in the seas,” he said, according to a press release by the Turkish Presidency.
Erdogan has repeatedly warned that he will not permit what he called the seizing of natural resources by Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean.
Cyprus has granted US oil giant ExxonMobil and partner Qatar Petroleum rights to explore for gas and oil in block 10 of the country's exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
The company has reportedly completed its research and is expected to announce the results in about a week.