Greece and Turkey must solve their Aegean disputes, says Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in an interview with Kathimerini, noting that Ankara “is prepared to take all necessary measures” to protect its rights, and those of the Turkish Cypriots, in the eastern Mediterranean.
In an interview to Sunday’s Kathimerini, Cavusoglu claimed that plot 6 of Cyprus’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) where hydrocarbon explorations are already taking place, is within Turkey’s continental shelf.
“It goes without saying that we will never allow unauthorized hydrocarbon exploration and exploitation activities on our continental shelf,” he said and accused the Greek Cypriots of conducting “unilateral hydrocarbon activities in the eastern Mediterranean."
“Turkish Cypriots, as co-owners of the island, have inalienable rights to the natural resources around it,” he said.
He also reiterated claims that there is no sea border between Greece and Cyprus and insisted that Athens and Ankara must first resolve their disputes in the Aegean.
Athens and Ankara, he said, need to insist on building a positive agenda in bilateral relations and pointed to the upcoming High Level Council of Cooperation of Greece and Turkey in Thessaloniki.
“I invite our Greek friends to focus first on finding a comprehensive just and lasting solution to the Aegean dispute, instead of adding more problems to the already existing catalogue,” he said.