Eastern Mediterranean

Turkey extends Oruç Reis’ research activities in Eastern Mediterranean to November 14

Daily Sabah – Turkey has issued another navigational telex, or Navtex, to extend the seismic research activities of the Oruç Reis survey vessel until Nov. 14.

According to an announcement on Sunday, two other vessels, the Ataman and Cengiz Han, will accompany Oruç Reis during its activities.

It will conduct various geological, geophysical, hydrographic and oceanographic surveys, especially of the continental shelf, while also searching for natural resources.

It was previously stated that Oruç Reis would remain in the area until Nov. 4.

NATO members Turkey and Greece are at odds over conflicting claims to hydrocarbon resources in the Eastern Mediterranean and overlapping views on the extent of their continental shelves.

Ankara accuses Athens of pursuing maximalist policies in the region and underlines that its maritime claims constitute a violation of Turkey’s sovereign rights.

Turkey has also said energy resources near the island of Cyprus must be shared fairly between the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and the Greek Cypriot administration.

The Oruç Reis returned to the Turkish port of Antalya in mid-September after its time at sea ended – as determined in its latest Navtex declaration.

The vessel’s exploration work was initially scheduled to last until Sept. 1 but was later extended until Sept. 12, with the expectation of another extension later, continuing until Sept. 25.

Many argue, however, that talks between Turkey and Greece initiated by NATO last month are the main reasons behind the vessel’s break from work in order to enhance dialogue and ease tensions.

Still, Turkey highlighted multiple times that the vessel’s work would continue after a short break since the country’s determination to maintain its rights in the region remains strong.

Daily Sabah
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