EU leaders approve sanctions on Turkish officials over gas drilling | Turkey

EU leaders have agreed to impose sanctions on an unspecified number of Turkish officials and companies involved in gas drilling in Cypriot-claimed waters – but with their forthcoming advice postponed large decisions such as trade tariffs or arms embargoes. Biden Administration.

The decision by the EU Council after hours of heated debate has disappointed tough people like France. Cyprus Greece has pressed for more urgent and substantial action to reveal that the EU does not accept Turkish foreign policy.

Nevertheless, the Turkish Foreign Ministry responded: “We reject the partisan and illegal approach that should be included in the decisions of the December 10 EU summit after pressure from unity and veto.”

The foreign ministry said the decisions reached at the EU summit were “illegal” and “once again ignored the Turkish Syrian people, the co-owners of the island of Cyprus.”

The names of those facing sanctions will be released in the next few weeks by EU Foreign Secretary Joseph Borel. He also agreed to prepare plans in a broader approach Turkey By March, the EU had been given the opportunity to consult with Joe Biden’s National Security Council.

The US president-elect called Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan an autonomous, but sought to avoid opposing Ankara’s incoming administration.

“What is at stake here is very clear: reliability European union, ”Greek Prime Minister Griacos Mitsotakis said before the summit. Greek diplomats did little to cover up their disappointment.

France and Greece have argued that the EU has already agreed in October to impose sanctions if the Ankara regime does not stop its “provocations” and “aggressive rhetoric.”

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Turkey uses the Orus Reyes research vessel in Greek waters, which then sends it back to Turkish ports when diplomatic heat is needed from Germany.

Germany insisted on keeping the door open for Turkish cooperation, and the EU report promised to extend a hand of friendship if Turkey reconsidered, and offered a lasting extension, including the option of resolving disputes through dialogue and international law.

It also recommends a multilateral conference on the future of the eastern Mediterranean, something that Turkey would like to see excluded from some regional energy forums.

Turkey has been locked in various conflicts with the EU, including widespread disagreements over drilling claims in Cyprus and the drawing of maritime borders.

France and Turkey are at loggerheads in Libya, where Erdogan has sent arms and troops to help the Tripoli government in the West, which some in Paris see as a front for the Muslim Brotherhood.

Turkey’s key role in NATO is causing concern in some areas. The invasion of northeastern Syria and the purchase of S-400 missiles from Russia have embarrassed France, but NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has described Turkey as an important ally.

Additional Report by Bethan McKernan

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