Germany slams Turkey for gas exploration in eastern Mediterranean

The German government on Monday slammed Turkey for its gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean, saying the endeavour further compromised Ankara’s relationship with the European Union.

“Further seismic exploration at this point is certainly the wrong signal,” a German Foreign Ministry spokesman said with regard to Turkish activities south of the Greek island of Kastellorizo, adding that Athens and Ankara should engage in dialogue.

Turkey issued a Navtex advisory that its research ship Oruc Reis and two other vessels would conduct seismic surveys from Monday until August 23.

The Oruc Reis had arrived at its operational area, Turkish Energy Minister Fatih Donmez tweeted on Monday.

In July, Ankara decided to temporarily pause its energy exploration in the eastern Mediterranean to pursue dialogue with Athens, after a request from German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced last week that Turkey had restarted drilling operations, following a maritime agreement signed by Greece and Egypt outlining an exclusive economic zone for oil and gas drilling in the eastern Mediterranean.

At an emergency meeting in Greece, a committee for foreign affairs and defence discussed “ways for Athens to respond to Turkish provocations,” Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ Cabinet said.

“All will be well,” the head of the Greek armed forces Konstantinos Floros told reporters after the meeting.

Turkey’s exploratory drills for hydrocarbons have inflamed tensions with fellow NATO member Greece.

Athens insists the continental shelf is its exclusive zone because of the presence of its islands, which Turkey contests, saying the islands are 580 kilometres away from the mainland.

Be the first to comment on "Germany slams Turkey for gas exploration in eastern Mediterranean"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.