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EU’s Tajani says Turkey’s drilling plans violate international law

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The head of the European Parliament said on Monday Turkey's intention to drill within Cyprus' exclusive economic zone (EEZ) violates international law and called on the country to avoid raising tension in the region.

“I am greatly concerned by Turkey’s plans to drill offshore within the exclusive economic zone  of Cyprus. I call on the Turkish authorities to show restraint and act in accordance with international law by ceasing illegal operations and removing support vessels from the EEZ of Cyprus immediately,” Antonio Tajani said in a press release.

“Turkey’s intention to drill within the EEZ of Cyprus is a violation of international law. The Republic of Cyprus has the full and sovereign right to explore and exploit natural resources within its EEZ.”

Tajani also cited a resolution passed by the European Parliament on 13 November 2014 on Turkish action causing tension in the EEZ of Cyprus.

He added his voice to those of the US State Department and the Israeli Ambassador to Cyprus Sammy Revel who expressed support for Nicosia's rights in its EEZ.