Ankara is planning to open five boreholes in a hydrocarbon field in the Eastern Mediterranean near the Cyprus shelf in 2020, said the Turkish Cypriot Broadcasting Corporation Bayrak Wednesday.
Turkey will continue drilling operations in this area next year on the basis of licenses issued by the so-called Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), which is recognized only by Ankara in the world community. According to the ministry, the Turkish drilling vessels Fatih and Yavuz continue their research work in the Eastern Mediterranean with the aim of finding oil and gas, on November 22 they began drilling in the fourth section in the area of this field.
According to the broadcasting company, Turkey plans to drill 26 wells by 2023 in the Eastern Mediterranean in the expectation of the discovery of hydrocarbons.
Turkey, which occupied the northern part of Cyprus in 1974 and has not recognized the Republic of Cyprus since 1963, disputes the borders of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of this island state and declares that it will not allow exploration activities off the coast of the island without the consent of the Turkish Cypriot community. Turkish drilling ships operate in the Cyprus EEZ, escorted by Turkish Navy ships and operating under the licenses of the self-proclaimed TRNC. Such actions have always provoked Nicosia’s protest, and the EU in response imposed sanctions against Ankara.