Turkey has warned against any attempt to violate its purported continental shelf following a highly contentious agreement with the internationally-recognized government in Libya on maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean reached last month.
In an interview with Turkish broadcaster A Haber, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that the memorandum of understanding signed on November 27 complies with international law, as he illustrated a map depicting the purported new boundaries of Turkey’s continental shelf.
“Within our continental shelf, no one can conduct activity without our permission, if it happens, we will prevent it,” Cavusoglu was quoted as saying by state-run Anadolu agency.
Greece has lodged objections at the United Nations over the Turkey-Libya pact, saying it's a violation of international law. Athens last week expelled the Libyan ambassador in response to the agreement which skirts the island of Crete and infringes the country’s continental shelf.
Meanwhile on Wednesday, Cavusoglu suggested that the United States could be barred from using two strategic air bases in retaliation to possible US sanctions against his country.
His comments came amid reports that US lawmakers had agreed on a defense bill that also includes calls to sanction Turkey over its decision to proceed with the purchase and deployment of Russian-made S-400 missile defense systems.
“In the event of a decision to sanction Turkey, the Incirlik and Kurecik airbases can be brought to the agenda,” Anadolu quoted Cavusoglu as saying. [Kathimerini/AP]