European Parliament: Turkey must immediately end illegal drilling activities

Members of the European Parliament adopted a resolution on Thursday which calls on Turkey to immediately end any further illegal exploration and drilling activities in the Eastern Mediterranean.

According to the MEPs’ statement, it also calls on Turkey to refrain from violating Greek airspace and Greek and Cypriot territorial waters and stop its “nationalistic warmongering rhetoric.”

The resolution was approved by six of the EU Parliament’s seven political groups, from the center-right Christian democrats, conservatives and reformists to the leftist Greens and former communists.

It is expected that at a European Union leaders meeting on September 24-25, a decision will be made to sanction Turkey for its defiance of international law and its threats of war against Greece and Cyprus.

The EU says it fully supports member states Greece and Cyprus in their dispute with Turkey and has said unless the country shows “sincere cooperation and concrete progress” in easing tensions with Greece and Cyprus, there will be sanctions.

However, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu earlier this week confidently said that he does not believe the European Union will sanction Turkey for its violation of Greek and Cypriot maritime space and Continental shelves for over a month.

Meanwhile, Greece resumed high-level talks with Turkey to try and de-escalate a dispute over Eastern Mediterranean borders and energy rights.

Greek government spokesman Stelios Petsas stated that direct contacts had restarted after the Turkish Oruc Reis research vessel returned to Turkey after violating the Greek and Cypriot continental shelf and maritime space for over a month.