Turkey rejects Greek accusations of violating sea laws -UPDATED

Turkish Foreign Ministry's spokesperson Tanju Bilgic says Greek foreign minister's "logic" is wrong and undermining the Cyprus peace talks.

Turkey rejects Greek accusations of violating sea laws -UPDATED

World Bulletin/News Desk

Turkey Friday rejected Greek accusations of sea law violations in the waters around Cyprus.

The Greek Foreign Ministry had accused Turkey of violating the law of the sea by sending an oil-and-gas exploration ship to the eastern Mediterranean in the first week of October.

"Greece's logic is wrong and Greece is undermining the Cyprus peace talks," Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson Tanju Bilgic said in a statement Friday.

Greece is in a "misperception" about the peace talks for the island, the statement said. "The misperception, unfortunately, plays a big role in the negotiations to rebuild the cooperation which the Greek Cypriots destroyed in 1963 -- between the two sides to continue for over 46 years."

In 1960, a partnership between the Turkish and Greek Cypriots was set up in accordance with the international agreements signed by the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot sides, as well as the Turkish, Greek and British governments.

However, in 1963, only three years later, the Turkish Cypriots were ousted by force from all organs of the new republic by their Greek-Cypriot partners in clear breach of the agreements and the Constitution. The claim put forth thereafter by the Greek Cypriots to represent the “Republic of Cyprus” has been illegal, and has not been recognized by Turkey.

Greek Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos had claimed that Turkey sabotaged negotiations between Turkish and Greek Cypriots, which were suspended by Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades early this month following reports that a Turkish warship had been sent to monitor Greek Cypriot hydrocarbon exploration.

Turkey and the Turkish-Cypriot government have strongly opposed any unilateral move by the Greek-Cypriot administration to explore any hydrocarbon resources around the island, saying that its natural resources should be exploited in a fair manner under a united Cyprus.

"The main aim of the talks is to establish two states in the island with equal rights," Bilgic said. "Ignoring that and legitimizing the actions of the Greek side clearly cannot help anything."

The spokesperson also recalled that steps taken in the eastern Mediterranean, while ignoring the international law will only cause more problems.

"Turkey will preserve its attitude towards the issues to be discussed through existing dialogue methods," the spokesperson's statement added.

The island of Cyprus has remained divided into Greek and Turkish parts since a Greek Cypriot coup was followed by a Turkish peace mission to aid Turkish Cypriots in the north in 1974.


Last Mod: 24 Ekim 2014, 22:01
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