There is no reason for panic from the Turkish threats in Cyprus EEZ, says Minister of Defence

Turkey’s moves in relation to the beginning of TOTAL drillings in Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone are expected and should not make us feel worried, Cyprus Defence Minister Christoforos Fokaides has stated, noting that the National Guard is monitoring the situation.

Speaking in Limassol, Fokaides said that we have seen such moves by Turkey in the past, during previous drillings in Cyprus EEZ. At the same time, the Minister did not reject the possibility Turkish threats to be continued or even more an effort to create tension by Turkey to take place.

Fokaides sent the message that the Republic of Cyprus should not, at any case, be driven to the creation or to the reproduction of a climate of tension, aims at the cancellation of the energy planning of the Republic of Cyprus.

We do what we ought to do. The militarisation of the whole issue does not benefit our national interests. We are closely monitoring the situation, we are implementing our plans, we are cooperating with all the parties concerned and we are remaining calm and concentrated to the national target of implementing and concluding our energy planning, he pointed out.

Replying to a question, Fokaides noted that there is no reason for concerns and panic as regards the Turkish threats.

Concessions by the Republic of Cyprus in block 11 were granted to Total back in 2013. The French energy giant decided to extend the lease of block 11, re-evaluating its geophysical model in view of the discovery of Egypt’s giant Zohr field, only about 6km away from the boundary of block 11. Last March, Eni announced an agreement with Total to acquire 50% participating interest of the offshore block. Total remains the operator of the block.

Source: Cyprus News Agency