The coronavirus pandemic was not an obstacle for Turkey to continue in illegal excavations in the eastern Mediterranean, and violated international law again, and now it is practicing piracy acts striking the European Union’s rejection of its actions and the violation of the Republic of Cyprus.
Turkey continued in its provocative style and policy to ignore the danger resulting from the global outbreak of coronavirus and not to take into account the difficulties facing other countries.
According to the report of the Naval Forces on the website of the Turkish Ministry of Defense, the Al-Fateh and Yavuz drilling ships with the research ship Barbaros have announced the arrival of the Turkish Yavuz drilling ship accompanied by a Turkish frigate.
Earlier, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoglu stated that his country is continuing to resume drilling activities for the third time, and a maritime notification was issued to carry out drilling and exploration work during the period from April 20 to the next July 18.
At that time, it was agreed to postpone the activities of major companies operating in the Cyprus fields with huge reserves, in exploration until next year, to damage the commercial and military ships and aircraft carriers at sea due to the outbreak of coronavirus which caused the resentment and anger of the reactions of some other countries.
On April 16, a spokesman for the Cypriot government, Kyriakos Koshos, told his country’s official news agency: “Turkey is not only continuing its policy that leads to the already tense situation in the eastern Mediterranean, but is intensifying it and making it worse, at a time when the entire world is facing a pandemic.”
On the other hand, Ankara’s response to these condemnations was that its position was ignored, when the Greek Cypriots explored and exploited resources in the Eastern Mediterranean unilaterally without agreeing to share the revenue with the Turkish Cypriots living in the Republic, unilaterally declared in the northern part of the island, and confirmed the need to reach an agreement to solve this dilemma and distribution to both parties.
Turkey’s blunt policy of continuing excavations in the eastern Mediterranean and illegal excavations in the exclusive economic zone of Cyprus has caused resentment in Nicosia, and has subsequently condemned this policy, considering that Ankara plays the role of pirate in the eastern Mediterranean region, and does not take into account the spread of the virus.
As for Greece, it condemned Turkey’s continuing excavation work in the economic zone of Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean and said that Ankara again ignores the calls of the international community to respect international law. The Greek Foreign Ministry expressed its intention to escalate Turkey’s illegal behavior towards Athens and Turkey’s continuing anomalous activities in the region.
In turn, the European Union has threatened to activate the sanctions framework it has put in place during the past months, and increase expectations for more sanctions against Ankara, regarding the violations it follows in the region.
Peter Stano, spokesperson for the High Representative for Security and Foreign Policy in the European Union, stressed that there is close monitoring by member states and institutions towards Turkish actions in the Eastern Mediterranean region, and the need for the Union to adhere to the sanctions that it recently approved.
It said in a press conference that there has been a break for a while, but there has been no change in the position of the European Union on illegal Turkish actions in the eastern Mediterranean.