The European Union is stepping up its efforts to enforce the UN arms embargo on Libya, thereby contributing to the peace process in the country, through the launch of a new CSDP (Common Security and Defence Policy) military operation in the Mediterranean.
Following the latest decision by Turkey to dispatch a drilling ship on a new drilling operation within Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone the EU recalls and reaffirms its position as clearly defined by previous relevant Council and European Council conclusions. Turkey continues illegal activities in the Eastern Mediterranean and EU Foreign Ministers reply.
In line with previous Council Conclusions, the EU stands in full solidarity with Cyprus and Greece. EU Council reiterates that concrete steps towards creating an environment conducive to dialogue are needed. Issues related to delimitation of exclusive economic zones and the continental shelf should be addressed through dialogue and negotiation in good faith. EU mentions that debates have to be in full respect of international law and in pursuit of the principle of good neighbourly relations. In this respect, EU Council welcomes once again the invitation by the Government of Cyprus to Turkey to negotiate in good faith the maritime delimitation between their relevant coasts.
EUNAVFOR MED operation IRINI
Cooperation, Solidarity, Development and of course Peace!
The most recent escalating actions by Turkey regrettably go in the opposite direction. Turkish-Libyan deal over maritime boundaries violates EU borders and international law! EU Council deplores that Turkey has not yet responded to the European Union’s repeated calls to cease such activities and reiterate our call on Turkey to show restraint, refrain from such actions, and respect the sovereignty and sovereign rights of Cyprus, in accordance with international law.
EU mission Irini launches French and Greek vessels to enforce Libya embargo.
Can Maritime Memorandum between Turkey – Libya officially go into effect?
Libya is a country rich in oil and gas reserves that borders important Mediterranean trade routes. The country’s destabilization aroused the avarice of various international players, including the Turkish government. Turkey’s deal with Libya maps out a boundary in the east of the Mediterranean Sea, but in the middle is the Greek island of Crete and violates the sovereign rights of Greece. Israel and Egypt are also involved in this increasingly bitter controversy.
IRINI will be led by Rear Admiral Fabio Agostini as EU Operation Commander, and its headquarters will be located in Rome, Italy.
The mandate of Operation IRINI will initially last until 31 March 2021, and will be under the close scrutiny of EU Member States, that will exercise political control and strategic direction through the Political and Security Committee (PSC), under the responsibility of the Council and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.