NEWS

Turkey rejects joint criticism of Libya maritime border deal

turkey-rejects-joint-criticism-of-libya-maritime-border-deal

Turkey on Thursday rejected a joint statement released by the foreign ministers of Greece, Cyprus, Egypt and France which denounced two memorandums of understanding signed between Turkey and the Tripoli-based government in Libya, arguing that it “is based entirely on factitious arguments and false premises.”

The Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a press release that the two MoUs are “legitimate and fully compatible with international law.”

“These memoranda of understanding constitute a response to those aiming to disregard the presence of Turkey and Turkish Cypriots in the Eastern Mediterranean. The press statement dated 8 January, indeed reveals once again that the steps taken by Turkey in the Eastern Mediterranean are rightful and appropriate,” the ministry said.

It also expressed its willingness to cooperate with all countries on these issues, except Cyprus, which it does not recognize.

The foreign ministers of Greece, Cyprus and Egypt, Nikos Dendias, Nikos Christodoulides and Sameh Shoukry, along with their French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian, said after their meeting in Cairo that the deal delimitating maritime borders between Turkey and Libya is not in accordance with international law, produces no legal consequence and violates the sovereign rights of states in the region.

The joint statement also condemned Turkey’s “illegal actions” in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone. The four ministers said they will continue this format of consultations and that their next meeting will take place on Crete.