US State Department responds to Turkish threats against Cyprus drilling contracts

Cyprus EEZ zone

The State Department has also responded to Turkish threats against Cyprus & international oil companies by reaffirming that “the United States recognizes the right of the Republic of Cyprus to develop the resources in its exclusive economic zone”.


Yesterday the Cypriot Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a response to the Statement issued by the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey on 2.12.2021

The Turkish Statement from the MFA.

In response to the Statement issued on 2 December 2021 by the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, concerning the Decision of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus with regard to the licensing of exploration block 5 to the Consortium ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus notes the following:

The aforementioned statement demonstrates, yet again, Turkey’s utter disregard for conventional and customary International Law, as reflected in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as its disrespect for the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus over its continental shelf and EEZ.

Block 5 lies within the EEZ/continental shelf of Cyprus, in a marine area to the south-west of the island, already delimited, in accordance with International Law, between the relevant opposite coastal states, namely the Republic of Cyprus and the Arab Republic of Egypt, by means of the 2003 EEZ Delimitation Agreement. The exploration and/or exploitation of Block 5 is an exclusive sovereign right of Cyprus and does not affect the rights of any third state, including Turkey.

The expansion of ExxonMobil’s presence in Cyprus’ EEZ/continental shelf constitutes a vote of confidence to Cyprus’ energy strategy. Turkey deliberately fails, once again, to comply with International Law, by making groundless claims and disregarding the position of the international community in full support of the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus in its own EEZ/continental shelf.

The Republic of Cyprus will resolutely continue its policy in the field of hydrocarbons, in full respect of International and European Law.

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