CYPRUS: Greece urges EU to denounce Turkey’s illegal drilling

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Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras urged the EU to condemn in the strongest terms Turkey’s illegal actions in the Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

In a phone conversation with President of the European Council Donald Tusk, Tsipras said the European Council, to be held in Brussels 20-21 June, must utterly denounce the Turkish actions and examine concrete measures against Turkey, if it insists on violating International Law.

According to government sources, the Greek Prime Minister will have a series of telephone contacts with European Heads of State, in order to express Greece’s positions in view of the forthcoming European Council.

The discovery of huge gas reserves in the Mediterranean has fuelled a race to tap underwater resources and triggered an escalating dispute between Turkey and Cyprus, an EU member state that also plans to ramp up its exploratory activities in the area.

The European Union in May urged Turkey to show restraint and respect the sovereign rights of Cyprus over the energy dispute, while the US also asked Ankara to reconsider.