Turkish ship to begin drilling south of Cyprus by Tuesday: energy minister

The Turkish drillship Yavuz is escorted by Turkish Navy frigate Gemlik (F-492) in the eastern Mediterranean Sea off Cyprus in this August 6, 2019 photo. (Reuters)
Updated 07 October 2019

Turkish ship to begin drilling south of Cyprus by Tuesday: energy minister

  • Cyprus has accused Turkey of a ‘severe escalation’ of violations of its sovereign rights
  • Turkey and Greece are allies in NATO but have long been at loggerheads over Cyprus

ISTANBUL: The Turkish drillship Yavuz will begin drilling for oil and gas southwest of Cyprus on Monday or Tuesday, Energy Minister Fatih Donmez said, in a move which has intensified tensions between the two countries.
Ankara said on Thursday it had sent the ship to the area where Greek Cypriot authorities have already awarded hydrocarbon exploration rights to Italian and French companies.
Cyprus has accused Turkey of a “severe escalation” of violations of its sovereign rights.
“All preparations have been completed, and it (Yavuz) will start its first drilling in the area either today or tomorrow,” Donmez told an energy conference on Monday.
Turkey has already drilled wells in waters to the east and west of the island, triggering strong protests from Nicosia and the European Union in recent months, including EU sanctions.
Turkey and Greece are allies in NATO but have long been at loggerheads over Cyprus, which has been ethnically split between Greek and Turkish Cypriots since 1974.
The internationally recognized Greek Cypriot government represents Cyprus in the European Union, while a breakaway Turkish Cypriot state in the north is only recognized by Ankara.
The latest development is the first time the two sides have targeted the same area. The United States has warned Turkey not to engage in “illegal” drilling activity in the area.
On Monday, Yavuz was located about 50 nautical miles (90 km) southwest of Cyprus, Refinitiv Eikon shipping data showed.


Kuwait’s emir reappoints premier, removes defense and interior ministers

Updated 18 November 2019

Kuwait’s emir reappoints premier, removes defense and interior ministers

  • Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah asked Sheikh Jaber to form a new cabinet, state news agency KUNA said

DUBAI: Kuwait’s ruling emir on Monday reappointed Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah as prime minister but removed the defense and interior ministers, both senior members of the ruling family, from their posts after the government’s resignation last week.

Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah asked Sheikh Jaber to form a new cabinet, state news agency KUNA said. Sheikh Jaber last week submitted the government’s resignation when lawmakers sought a no-confidence vote against the interior minister.

KUNA said in a separate statement that the emir ordered the removal of his son, Defense Minister Sheikh Nasser Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, and Interior Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khalid Al-Sabah from their posts in the current caretaker cabinet.