Monday, July 15 2024

Five Foreign Ministers condemn Turkey's illegal activities in East Med.

The Foreign Affairs ministers of Greece, Cyprus, Egypt, France and the United Arab Emirates called on Turkey to "fully respect the sovereignty and sovereign rights of all states in their marine zones in the East Mediterranean," during a teleconference on Monday.

At the meeting to discuss the latest developments in the East Mediterranean, the five ministers also discussed the regional crises threatening the region's stability. In a joint declaration, they "expressed their deepest concern over the current escalation and continuous provocative actions" in the region by Turkey. They denounced the ongoing Turkish illegal activities in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone and its territorial waters, which they called a clear violation of the UN's Law of the Sea, noting that recent activity was the sixth attempt by Turkey in less than a year to illegally conduct drilling operations in Cyprus’ maritime zones.
They also condemned the escalation of Turkey’s violations of the Greek national airspace, including overflights of inhabited areas and territorial waters in violation of International Law, and the instrumentalization of civilians by Turkey in an attempt to illegally cross Greek land borders, as well as its continued support for illegal crossings of Greek sea boundaries.
Referring to the memorandum signed between Turkey and the Tripoli government in November 2019, they called it a "contravention of international law and the UN arms embargo in Libya," saying they both undermined regional stability. "The Memorandum of Understanding on the delimitation of maritime jurisdictions in the Mediterranean Sea infringes upon the sovereign rights of third states, does not comply with the Law of the Sea and cannot produce any legal consequences for third States," they said.
The Ministers also deeply regretted the escalation of hostilities in Libya, strongly condemning Turkey’s military interference in Libya, and urged Turkey to fully respect the UN arms embargo and to stop the influx of foreign fighters from Syria to Libya. "These developments constitute a threat to the stability of Libya’s neighbours in Africa as well as in Europe," they said in their declaration, and called on Libyan parties to observe a truce during the holy month of Ramadan.
In addition, they stressed their commitment to work towards a comprehensive political solution to the Libyan crisis under the auspices of the United Nations, and expressed their keenness for the resumption of the meetings of the three tracks of the Berlin process (political, military, economic & financial).