Published: Fri, December 06, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Turkey rejects criticism of Libya maritime deal

Turkey rejects criticism of Libya maritime deal

Earlier on Thursday, Cyprus petitioned the International Court of Justice at The Hague to safeguard its offshore mineral rights, its president said, as neighbor Turkey disputes its claims.

Mr Mitsotakis will be meeting other leaders during the summit, including with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"The texts which Ankara refers to regarding maritime zones will not be ratified because they are wrong geographically and historically, wiping Greek islands off the map and leading Turkey to an unprecedented diplomatic isolation", Mitsotakis said during a speech in parliament Friday.

A maritime boundaries agreement signed between Turkey and Libya's UN-supported government constitutes a blatant violation of the global Law of the Sea as well as of the sovereign rights of Greece and other states, the Greek Foreign Ministry said in a statement Friday in which it condemned the pact.

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said he had discussed the problem and other differences between Greece and Turkey with Erdogan on the sidelines of a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in London on Wednesday, adding that both leaders had "identified disagreements".

The accord between Turkey and Libya's internationally recognised government, which mapped out a sea area between the two countries, was signed on November 27.

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The deal sparked outrage in the Libyan parliament, which is located in the East and is in line with the self-styled Libyan national army led by General Khalifa Hifter. It will be filed with the United Nations after the presidential council of Libya's internationally backed government signs the memorandum of understanding the two countries reached in Istanbul, Kiran said.

"Of course I condemn it", he told a group of journalists on the sidelines of a regional meeting in Rome.

European Union member Cyprus was divided in a Turkish invasion in 1974 after a brief Greek-inspired coup.

The proposed agreement could extend Turkey's continental shelf by around a third.

Turkish drilling and exploration ships are now operating off divided Cyprus under agreements with the northern Turkish Cypriot state, which is recognized only by Turkey.

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