The European People’s Party (EPP) and the Party of European Socialists (PES) have both condemned Turkey’s illegal drilling activities in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), in announcements released on Thursday.
In a meeting of EPP leaders held ahead of the European Council in Brussels, they “expressed their full solidarity to [Cyprus] President Nicos Anastasiades over the latest Turkish provocation in Cyprus. The EPP strongly condemns Turkish drilling activities within the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ),” the announcement said.
“We consider Turkey’s actions in the Exclusive Economic Zone to be a very serious breach of the sovereign rights of the Republic of Cyprus. We continue to closely monitor developments in the Eastern Mediterranean region and call on the Turkish government to cease its illegal actions immediately …and respect the territorial integrity of Cyprus. Cypriot citizens can count on our full support and solidarity”, said EPP President Joseph Daul.
The PES, which had issued an announcement denouncing Turkey actions in Cyprus’ EEZ two days earlier, on Thursday said its summit meeting ahead of the European Council had again “denounced the attempts by Turkey to begin gas exploration in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone”. The “Prime Ministers, Commissioners and leaders called on Turkey to uphold good neighbourly relations with surrounding states and to respect the territorial integrity of Cyprus,” it added.