CNA - The Cypriot Foreign Ministry issued Friday an announcement in which it denounces new Turkish threats as regards Cyprus' right to explore and exploit its hydrocarbon reserves in its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
"The Turkish Foreign Ministry's new threats prove once more Turkey's illegal and provocative behavior" the Cypriot FM notes.
It furthermore points out that Turkish threats are groundless since the Republic of Cyprus has always acted in accordance with international law and exercises its sovereign rights over land, sea and in its Exclusive Economic Zone / Continental Shelf, as safeguarded by the international law and particularly the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982).
In addition, it stresses that Cyprus enjoys the support of the international community to exercise its sovereign rights, as has been expressed many times both on bilateral, as well as on multilateral level.
"Turkish claims are unfounded and contrary to international law. An occupying power can not define the policy for an independent and sovereign state, nor attempt to impose its expansionist plans through threats" the statement notes.
Energy, greatest challenge after handling Cyprus issue
Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Neoclis Sylikiotis said Friday that the energy sector is perhaps the greatest challenge that Cyprus has to face in its modern history, after the handling of the Cyprus problem.
In his address at the opening ceremony of the Cyprus International State Fair, Sylikiotis pointed out that the recent discovery of large quantities of natural gas within Cyprus' EEZ, "combined with the excellent results in terms of participation of major foreign companies for the second licensing round, create new perspectives for Cyprus' role in the world energy map".
Sylikiotis added that the government has drafted its energy policy by investing in three areas, namely, strengthening the security of energy supply to Europe, safeguarding the geo-strategic role of Cyprus and bringing natural gas and renewable energy sources to Cyprus so that the island gradually becomes energy self-sufficient.
He noted that the implementation of the energy policy requires the construction of the necessary energy infrastructure for the utilization of Cyprus' natural gas deposits.