Turkey will go as far as to directly interfere in the internal affairs of Cyprus in the wake of offshore oil and gas drilling by international energy companies.
This is what Turkish diplomat Oktay Aksoy told Russia’s Sputnik news agency on Monday.
“Turkey will not succumb to provocations. Turkey will not carry out a military intervention in Cyprus in the wake of the French and Italian actions. At least, not instantly,” Aksoy said.
“We will turn to NATO first, as we are members of the Alliance. We will try to explain the situation. However, if the Alliance takes the side of the European countries, Turkey will take stringent measures on its own, up to direct interference in the internal affairs of the island,” he added.
France’s Total in consortium with Italy’s Eni resumed in July the drilling of the gas fields in the exclusive economic zone of Cyprus.
- Italian Defence Minister in Cyprus for “symbolic” visit
- Cyprus says to push ahead with energy plans despite challenges
- Energy security and regional cooperation in the East Med
Turkey insists that the Republic of Cyprus doesn’t have an exclusive right to the island’s hydrocarbon resources, and seeks to have an ability to use the gas fields and buy cheap gas.
UN-brokered Cyprus talks aiming to reunite Cyprus reached a deadlock in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, early in July after Turkey insisted on maintaining intervention rights in a federal EU-member Cyprus.
Turkey, along with Greece and Britain, are guarantors of Cyprus but only Ankara ants to maintain this anachronistic role post-settlement.