0102 GMT September 29, 2020
Turkey and Greece, NATO allies, are at odds over overlapping claims for hydrocarbon resources in the region, and tensions have risen since Ankara launched exploration operations in a disputed area of the Mediterranean on Monday, Reuters reported.
Greece says Turkey’s exploration vessel Oruc Reis is operating illegally in waters which fall in Greece’s continental shelf, accusations which Ankara has dismissed. The vessel was accompanied by Turkish warships when it left port.
“Despite all this, we want to believe that common sense will prevail. Both on the field and at the table, we side with international law, good neighborliness and dialogue,” Akar told Reuters. “We want to reach political solutions through peaceful means in line with international laws.”
Akar said Turkey would continue to defend its “rights, ties and interests” in coastal waters. “It should be known that our seas are our blue homeland. Every drop is valuable,” he said.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday that his country will issue seismic exploration and drilling licenses in new areas of the Eastern Mediterranean by the end of August and continue its operations in the region.