A Turkish Oil Ship has started to drill for oil and gas in the Mediterranean Sea on October 31, sparking fears over potential disputes with neighbors Cyprus and Greece over jurisdiction, Reuters reported.
Turkey and the Greek Cypriot government of Cyprus have overlapping claims to offshore oil and gas research territory in the eastern Mediterranean.
Turkish energy minister Fatih Donmez said the ship will drill at the Alanya-1 borehole, located 100 kilometers off the southern province of Antalya and some distance from the disputed territory which lies further south and around Cyprus.
“Turkey has set its main goal as independence in energy,” Donmez said. “We don’t have an eye on others’ resources, our only issue is to present to our people the riches within our territory.”
Turkey is almost completely reliant on energy imports for its domestic needs.
Donmez said on October 30 that Turkey was also very close to buying another drilling ship. Last week, Turkey warned Greece to stay out of its activities in the eastern Mediterranean.