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Thread: Will The Eastern Med Be The Scene Of The First Conflict Of 2018?

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    Default Will The Eastern Med Be The Scene Of The First Conflict Of 2018?

    The eastern Mediterranean is expected to witness the first conflict of 2018, as developments at the end of 2017 are signaling worsening relationships between Turkey and the Greek Cypriot-Greece-Israel-Egypt bloc. Territorial disputes over natural gas and newly discovered hydrocarbon reserves in the eastern Mediterranean basin are the reason.


    Up until a few years ago, the hope was that these hydrocarbon reserves would offer a real opportunity for a peaceful settlement of the Cyprus conflict. But these optimistic hopes vanishedwith both Turks and Greek Cypriots unilaterally speeding up exploration and drilling operations.
    In 2004, the European Union had declared the Greek Cypriots the sole entity representing the island of Cyprus and accepted it as an EU member. Feeling that its hand has been strengthened following the EU decision, the Greek Cypriots claimed the right of natural resources exploration in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) around Cyprus.
    Turkey, however, has been insisting that the Greek Cypriot administration in Nicosia cannot unilaterally “adopt laws regarding the exploitation of natural resources on behalf of the entire island,” as it doesn’t represent the Turkish Cypriots. Also, there is a separate disputed EEZ between Turkey and Greece in the eastern Mediterranean — another point of tension in the conflict.
    Ankara reacted strongly to the Greek Cypriots' natural gas drilling efforts in July. The Turkish army dispatched a frigate in the eastern Mediterranean to "monitor a drilling ship that is believed to have begun searching for oil and gas off ethnically divided Cyprus despite Turkey's objections,” The Associated Press reported.
    On Nov. 20, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visited Greek Cypriot for a trilateral meeting in Nicosia to discuss hydrocarbon resources in the region. In addition to Egypt’s president, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras also participated in the meeting, which was hosted by Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades. The Turkish Foreign Ministry, on the other hand, declared the outcome of the trilateral meeting to be “null and void."
    However, despite Turkey’s opposition, drillship Saipem 12000 sailed to carry out exploration and drilling operations on behalf of French TOTAL and Italian ENI companies in the Calypso region between March 1 and Dec. 26 in accordance with an agreement reached during the trilateral summit.
    Moreover, Italy, Greece, Greek Cypriot and Israel had already agreed on the construction of a gas pipeline from newly discovered fields. The project — dubbed “East-Med” — will cost some $6 billion. An over 2,000-kilometer-long (1,243-mile-long) pipeline will channel offshore reserves in the Levantine basin to Greece and Italy.


    In 2017, the Greek Cypriots, Israel and Greece conducted three joint exercises in March, June and November. At the beginning of November 2017, Greece and Egypt held their first joint naval exercise for the first time in quite a while.
    In response, Ankara initiated its own moves and issued a navigational telex to reserve an area for military exercises. The area covers the disputed sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth blocs that the Greek Cypriots had declared as their EEZ. Ankara’s declaration came at a time when Saipem 12000 arrived in the Mediterranean.

    More at: https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-...-conflict-2018
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    Over this?
    Truth is a social construct. 👁👁






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