Update: 13 February, 2018 17:22 PM
Erdogan warns foreign companies over gas drilling near Cyprus

Erdogan warns foreign companies over gas drilling near Cyprus

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday warned foreign energy companies not to "overstep the mark" in the Mediterranean, after Turkey's warships blocked an Italian drilling vessel seeking to begin exploration for gas off Cyprus.
The growing standoff between Turkey and Cyprus over exploiting energy resources in the eastern Mediterranean risks further complicating stalled efforts to reunify the island following the collapse of peace talks last year.
"Don't think that we have ignored the opportunistic attempts to search for natural gas in Cyprus waters and Aegean coast," Erdogan said in a televised speech to his party in parliament.
"We warn those overstepping the mark with miscalculations in Cyprus and the Aegean," Erdogan added.
Italy's energy giant ENI said its ship had been ordered to stop by Turkish ships last week over "military activities in the destination area" as it was on course to start exploring in block 3 of Cyprus's exclusive economic zone.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the northern third of the island in response to a Greek military junta-sponsored coup.
While Greek-majority Republic of Cyprus is internationally recognised, the breakaway Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is recognised only by Ankara.
Ankara and Cyprus have long argued over the eastern Mediterranean, and Turkey has been stringent in defending the claims of Turkish Cypriots for a share.
Cyprus said on Thursday that exploratory drilling by Italy's ENI and France's Total had found gas reserves elsewhere off the island.
But Erdogan warned foreign companies working with the Cyprus government that "they should not be exploited as tools for a work that exceeds their limits and strengths".
He even compared Turkey's response over the issue to its military operations in northern Syria, which Turkey portrays as a fight against terror groups.
"Like on our southern border with our 'Euphrates Shield', 'Olive Branch' operations, we are ruining those who make mistaken calculations and their scenarios."
The European Union, where Cyprus is a member, has made clear it is keeping a close eye on Turkey's behaviour.
EU President Donald Tusk on Monday spoke with Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, urging Turkey on Twitter to "avoid threats or actions against any EU member".
He added Turkey should "instead commit to good neighbourly relations, peaceful dispute settlement and respect for territorial sovereignty."

সম্পাদক : ইমদাদুল হক মিলন,
নির্বাহী সম্পাদক : মোস্তফা কামাল,
ইস্ট ওয়েস্ট মিডিয়া গ্রুপ লিমিটেডের পক্ষে ময়নাল হোসেন চৌধুরী কর্তৃক প্লট-৩৭১/এ, ব্লক-ডি, বসুন্ধরা, বারিধারা থেকে প্রকাশিত এবং প্লট-সি/৫২, ব্লক-কে, বসুন্ধরা, খিলক্ষেত, বাড্ডা, ঢাকা-১২২৯ থেকে মুদ্রিত।
বার্তা ও সম্পাদকীয় বিভাগ : বসুন্ধরা আবাসিক এলাকা, প্লট-৩৭১/এ, ব্লক-ডি, বারিধারা, ঢাকা-১২২৯। পিএবিএক্স : ০২৮৪০২৩৭২-৭৫, ফ্যাক্স : ৮৪০২৩৬৮-৯, বিজ্ঞাপন ফোন : ৮১৫৮০১২, ৮৪০২০৪৮, বিজ্ঞাপন ফ্যাক্স : ৮১৫৮৮৬২, ৮৪০২০৪৭। E-mail : info@kalerkantho.com