Cyprus was taking all necessary diplomatic steps to resolve peacefully the harassment of ENI’s drillship Saipem 12000 by Turkish warships and avoid an escalation, President Nicos Anastasiades said on Sunday.
Turkey on Tuesday issued a new Navtex, or notice to mariners, effectively extending a blockade that prevents offshore drilling for natural gas by Italian energy firm ENI inside the island’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).
The Republic of Cyprus is expected to lodge a protest with the United Nations over moves by Turkey to prevent an Italian vessel from exploring for gas in the eastern Mediterranean.
Groningen has been one of Europe’s richest gas fields for 30 years, and thousands of people say their homes have been damaged by the tremors that drilling sets off. Now a class action may finally bring them compensation – and force a rethink of European energy security.
The Netherlands’ Government tells 200 companies they have four years to stop sourcing gas from Groningen field after increasingly significant earthquakes.
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Turkey's confrontation with an Italian drilling ship in the eastern Mediterranean Sea could quickly reach crisis proportions. As I noted in an Al-Monitor story Dec. 26, developments were warning of growing tension between Turkey and the Greek Cypriots over newly discovered hydrocarbon reserves south of the island.
On 10 February Turkish warships on manoeuvres in the Mediterranean Sea have blocked the drilling ship - (Saipem 12000 – the same drilling ship that is licensed to drill off Costa Vicentina in Portugal), the SAIPEM 12000 - belonging to the Italian energy firm ENI and prevented it from reaching an area off Cyprus to start searching for gas, according to official government sources.
After finding a promising gas field off Cyprus last month, the drillship Saipem 12000 was scheduled to head for another lease site to the east.