In context of the ExxonMobil drilling in Plot 12 of the Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the recommendations by Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades to the European Council and the United Nations for his proposal for the participation of Turkish-speaking Cypriots in the National Hydrocarbon Fund in exchange for the recognition of the EEZ on the part of Turkey.
The big question is Turkey’s reaction to the drilling and Anastasiades’ offer.
For this reason, Anastasiadest is trying to anticipate them and restore an older proposal, essentially pointing out that the Republic of Cyprus is proposing cooperation, before the Turks make any response.
Pampos Chrysostomou, director of Research and International Relations at the Cyprus University of Technology, estimates that eventually the Turks will react despite Anastasiades’ offer.
The Turkish dilemma
According to the professor, the dilemma that the Turks still face is “either the drilling will be done our way or it will not be done at all.”
At the same time, he reminds us that the energy program had been frozen as the companies had initially withdrawn due to the pandemic, but mainly due to falling oil prices and a crisis in Greek-Turkish relations with violations in the Cypriot EEZ.
“The Turks found the ‘push’ for research at this juncture and during the previous period,” said Chrysostomou.
And the next question that arises is whether the Americans will intervene in the event of a Turkish intervention on a licensed plot or an adjacent one.
“My assessment is that this will not happen. They will throw the ball on the podium again and will invite Greek Cypriots and Turks to find each other,” added the professor.
Last month, the European Council announced that it was extending sanctions against Turkey for another year because of unauthorised drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean.
At the same time, however, “it is worth noting the oxymoron that European funds were disbursed to Turkey for refugee/immigrants despite its constant provocative statements and actions,” the professor stated.