Samaras, Anastasiades talk after Turkey makes move on Cypriot EEZ

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades spoke on the phone on Monday in the wake of a move by Turkey to apparently stake a claim to Cyprus’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Cypriot government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said the conversation took place “in light of recent developments.”

“President Anastasiadis and Prime Minister Samaras discussed possible next steps that will be coordinated between the two governments,” he said.

Their telephone conversation came after Turkey issued a NAVTEX (Navigational Telex) directive on Friday designating certain areas of Cyprus’s EEZ as reserved.

“The issue is particularly important. The Turkish NAVTEX violates the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus, but also the rights of the ENI company which is actively working within Cyprus EEZ following an agreement with the Republic of Cyprus,” said Christodoulides as Nicosia issued its own NAVTEX with the aim of emphasizing the illegality of Turkey’s move.

“Turkey is aware, and at any rate ought to be aware, that respect for the sovereignty and sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus in the EEZ and the continental shelf of the Republic of Cyprus – that is, of a member state of the United Nations and the European Union – is an obligation for the whole of the international community. Cyprus cannot bear any further violation of international law,” said Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Konstantinos Koutras.

“Turkey’s European course and the course of the negotiations in Cyprus hinge on Turkey’s conduct.”

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