Turkey’s Minister for European Union Affairs and Chief Negotiator, Ömer Çelik, has stated that there must be a mutual consent of the Turkish Cypriot side and the Greek Cypriot side regarding hydrocarbon explorations, as both sides share ownership in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Speaking to the press, Çelik reiterated that the Greek Cypriot’s EU enforcement initiative is “in question” after the tensions arose due to their unilateral exploration activities in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Çelik added: “We are discussing these issues, but the stance of the Greek Cypriots is wrong, as is the biased stance of the EU.”
Çelik reiterated that the European Union made a “mistake” by accepting the Greek Cypriot side as a member after they voted down the 2004 Annan Plan to reunify the island, noting that this decision failed to solve the border issue, and the fundamental issues with the Turkish Cypriots.
Çelik underlined that the Greek Cypriot Administration’s activities were a violation of the rights of both Turkish Cypriots and the Republic of Turkey under international law. He called on the EU not to take such a unilateral stance on this issue, and warned that Turkey will take proportionate steps to protect Turkish and Turkish Cypriot interests if this activity continues.
Source: TRNC Public Information Office