'No country can carry out hydrocarbon exploration within Turkish continental shelf'

Greek Cypriot administration's 'unilateral' activities will increase tension and threaten peace in Eastern Med, says Turkish Foreign Ministry.

'No country can carry out hydrocarbon exploration within Turkish continental shelf'

The Greek Cypriot administration cannot carry out hydrocarbon exploration within Türkiye’s continental shelf without Ankara's consent, the Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Friday.

"It is out of the question for any country, company, or ship to conduct hydrocarbon exploration or exploitation activities within the Turkish continental shelf in the Eastern Mediterranean without our consent," Tanju Bilgic said in a statement.

Bilgic said the Greek Cypriot administration has "unilaterally" carried out hydrocarbon activities without the consent of its neighbor, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), in violation of the rights of the Turkish Cypriots, who are co-owners of all the natural resources on and around the island.

He added that such activities also increase tension and threaten peace and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean.

"While President (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan’s 2020 proposal to hold an inclusive Eastern Mediterranean Conference and the four cooperation proposals made by the TRNC to the Greek Cypriots on hydrocarbon resources are still on the table, we would like to remind both the countries in the region and the third parties who the Greek Cypriots hide behind that escalating tension in the Eastern Mediterranean in this way would not benefit any party," Bilgic said.

Türkiye will continue to resolutely protect both its own and the TRNC's rights in the Eastern Mediterranean, and will continue to support the TRNC's hydrocarbon activities in the days and years ahead, he added.

Mistakenly cremation of Muslim man in Germany

About the cremation of a Muslim man's body in Germany, Bilgic said Türkiye is in close contact with the family members and German authorities.

"We provided the necessary coordination with our Presidency of Religious Affairs for arrival of the remains in Türkiye and for a funeral in accordance with our religion," Bilgic said.

Abdulkadir Sargin, a Turkish citizen, died at the emergency service of the Hannover Medical School Hospital last week.

During the funeral preparations on Tuesday, Sargin’s family members were shocked and confused when they saw that the person in the coffin was a complete stranger.

Upon their call to the hospital, they were informed that the hospital staff had mistakenly handed over the Turkish citizen's body to another family and that his body was cremated.

"We have some expectations from the German authorities, the first of which is the punishment of the offenders and an apology to the family.

"One of the expectations is that the ashes of the deceased be delivered to our country immediately," Bilgic said.

Hüseyin Demir

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