Serbia calls on Ankara to respect Cyprus’ sovereign rights in its exclusive economic zone

Serbia has called on Ankara to respect international law and has expressed concern about the situation in the Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone, EEZ, and the tension in the eastern Mediterranean.

Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic met with Cyprus Ambassador in Belgrade, Constantinos Eliades, with whom he discussed the issue and expressed Belgrades support for the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus.

According to a press release, dated June 3rd, on the Serbian MFA website, Serbia is expressing concern over the developments in the Eastern Mediterranean and condemns any action that is not in line with International Law, including the Convention on the Law of the Sea.

It is stated that the Republic of Serbia supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Cyprus and its sovereign rights to search and exploit its natural resources in its EEZ.

The Serbian FM says that all activities in the EEZ that have an economic benefit may only be carried out with the approval of the Cypriot authorities, in accordance with International Law and the Convention on the Law of the Sea. Therefore, it is added, Turkey is expected to respect the basic principles of international law so as to avoid tensions that will have a negative impact on the security of the region.

It is added that Serbia, which is faced with its own serious problems and needs to defend its own national interests, supports the dialogue as the only method for peaceful solution of the problems. Serbia underlines the need to avoid unilateral actions which directly jeopardize dialogue and the possibility of finding a solution.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory.

Ankara has issued a navigational telex, announcing its intention to start drilling off Cyprus until September 3. The Turkish drill ship Fatih has been located west of the Akamas peninsula, in an area which falls within the EEZ and continental shelf of the Republic of Cyprus.

Source: Cyprus News Agency