High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini warned Turkey about its illegal actions in member Cyprus Republic’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ), during a press conference following a Foreign Affairs Council on Monday.
Mogherini noted the close collaboration of Greek and Cypriot authorities with the EU on the issue and expressed “serious concern” on behalf of the EU over Turkey’s intention to proceed with drilling in Cyprus’ EEZ, reiterating a statement she had made on May 4. She also cited a statement of March 2018 in which EU member state leaders condemned Turkeys’ continued illegal actions in the East Mediterranean.
She then called on Turkey to urgently exercise self-restraint and to respect Cyprus’ sovereign rights in its EEZ, refraining from illegal actions that the EU will respond to as necessary and in full solidarity with Cyprus. The EU foreign affairs official also referred to the EU leaders Sibiu summit last week, in which attending foreign ministers took a clear stance in full support of Cyprus.
FM Katrougalos: Greece standing by Cyprus during Turkish provocations
Cyprus and Greece both spoke of Turkey’s illegal actions, including drilling, in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ) on Monday, Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Katrougalos said following the conclusion of the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council meeting.
“I said what is self-evident, that the Hellenic Republic stands by the Cyprus Republic with all means available, and the EU should do the same,” Katrougalos said, a message that was “accepted unanimously with no disagreement, as it reflected earlier EU decisions.”
The issue, he said, was discussed ex agenda, therefore discussion could not go in depth.
Today’s Council was focused on recent developments in Libya and on an exchange of views on the Sahel, in view of their joint session the next day with foreign and defence ministers of the G5 Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger).