Erdogan: Turkey and Libya can conduct joint explorations in eastern Med

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey and Libya can carry out joint exploration operations in the eastern Mediterranean after the two sides signed a deal on maritime boundaries, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday after the move sharpened disputes over the area. Libya's internationally recognised government and Turkey clinched the natural gas drilling accord last month in a step Ankara said aimed to defend its rights in the region, but that has infuriated Greece. Tensions were already running high between Greece and Turkey because of Turkish gas explorations in the eastern Mediterranean off the coast of the divided island of Cyprus.

Reuters December 10, 2019 03:10:44 IST
Erdogan: Turkey and Libya can conduct joint explorations in eastern Med

Erdogan Turkey and Libya can conduct joint explorations in eastern Med

ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey and Libya can carry out joint exploration operations in the eastern Mediterranean after the two sides signed a deal on maritime boundaries, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday after the move sharpened disputes over the area.

Libya's internationally recognised government and Turkey clinched the natural gas drilling accord last month in a step Ankara said aimed to defend its rights in the region, but that has infuriated Greece.

Tensions were already running high between Greece and Turkey because of Turkish gas explorations in the eastern Mediterranean off the coast of the divided island of Cyprus. The European Union has readied sanctions against Turkey in response.

Speaking in an interview with state broadcaster TRT Haber, Erdogan said the accord would also allow Turkey to carry out drilling on Libya's continental shelf with Tripoli's approval, and that the deal was in line with international law.

The area where Turkey and Libya have drawn their maritime borders in the accord is not far south of the large Greek island of Crete.

"With this new agreement between Turkey and Libya, we can hold joint exploration operations in these exclusive economic zones that we determined. There is no problem," Erdogan said.

"Other international actors cannot carry out exploration operations in these areas Turkey drew (up) with this accord without getting permission. Greek Cyprus, Egypt, Greece and Israel cannot establish a gas transmission line without first getting permission from Turkey," he said.

Greece and Turkey are at odds over a host of issues, ranging from mineral rights in the Aegean Sea to Cyprus, which is divided into a breakaway Turkish republic in the north and the Greek-speaking Republic of Cyprus, an EU member state, in the south. Greece does not recognise the north of Cyprus.

Aside from the maritime accord, Turkey and Libya also signed an expanded security and military cooperation agreement.

Erdogan said the military accord granted Turkey the right to deploy troops in Libya if the Tripoli government so asked, and added this would not violate a United Nations arms embargo on Libya, which is plagued by factional conflict.

"In the event of such a call coming, it is Turkey's decision what kind of initiative it will take here. We will not seek the permission of anyone on this," he said.

(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Pope Francis to have COVID-19 vaccine as early as next week
World

Pope Francis to have COVID-19 vaccine as early as next week

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Francis said on Saturday he planned to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as early as next week and urged everyone to get a shot, to protect not only their own lives but those of others.

U.S. Senator urges mobile, social media providers to keep Capitol rioters' data as man seen seizing Speaker's lectern arrested
World

U.S. Senator urges mobile, social media providers to keep Capitol rioters' data as man seen seizing Speaker's lectern arrested

By Rich McKay (Reuters) - A man photographed carrying off the Speaker's lectern during the Capitol Hill riots was arrested late Friday, while a top Democratic lawmaker on Saturday called on mobile carriers to preserve social media content related to the riots. Dozens of people have been charged following the storming of the Capitol on Wednesday, with the FBI asking the public for help identifying participants, given the proliferation of images of the riots on the internet.

Cuba to collaborate with Iran on coronavirus vaccine
World

Cuba to collaborate with Iran on coronavirus vaccine

By Sarah Marsh HAVANA (Reuters) - Communist-run Cuba said late on Friday it had signed an accord with Iran to transfer the technology for its most advanced coronavirus vaccine candidate and carry out last-stage clinical trials of the shot in the Islamic Republic. The allies are both under fierce U.S