Northern Cyprus’ ‘Foreign Minister’ Kudret Ozersay has stated that Turkish Cypriot disputes over their apparent rights to oil and gas are not geographical but are historical.
Following this, Ozersay went on to say that Turkish Cypriots would initiate their own exploration for oil and gas around Cyprus if Greek Cypriots were to persist with their own plans.
In addition, Turkey has vowed to prohibit what it perceives to be a unilateral move by Greek Cypriots but Cyprus, being an EU member, has shown no signs that would indicate that the country is backing down. Moreover, Brussels has encouraged Turkey to avoid threats and refrain from actions that may damage relations with the respective bloc.
According to Ozersay, the Greek Cypriot side needs to acknowledge and accept that the two sides are co-owners of the hydrocarbon resources.
On the other hand, Greek Cypriots have stated numerous times that a peace deal would permit both parties to benefit from such resources. The Greek Cypriot side have refused to include the issue in the reunification talks however the peace talks stopped short last year and has not shown sign of resuming any time soon.