EU Council condemns Turkey drilling operation

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The European Council criticised decisions by Turkey to dispatch a drilling ship to within Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone and accused Ankara of breaching international law. In a statement, the EU Foreign Ministers came out against Turkey’s “illegal activities” in the Eastern Mediterranean and called for dialogue and negotiation.

The European Council urged Turkey to pursue good neighbourly relations in the region and said that it backs a proposal by the governments of Cyprus and Greece to develop a common maritime delimitation between relevant coasts.

The EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, said that member states are united in their position: “We have sent a strong message to Turkey today in support of Cyprus and Greece,” he explained, “We continue our diplomatic efforts for a creative partnership.”

The Council’s statement warns that the continued illegal actions by the Turkish government would have a negative impact on broader EU-Turkey relations.

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