Turkey Rejects Greek EU Claims That Drilling Off Cyprus Illegitimate

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The Yavuz drillship dropped anchor on Monday to the south of Cyprus Karpasia peninsula a jutting northeastern panhandle. We reject the statements by the Greek Foreign Ministry and EU officials which describe these activities of our country as illegitimate the Turkish foreign ministry statement said. EU diplomats are meeting in Brussels on Wednesday to discuss any possible sanctions on Turkey over the drilling before EU foreign ministers meet on Monday. The EU is set to curb contacts and funding for Ankara in retaliation for what it calls Turkeys illegal drilling for gas and oil off Cyprus citing a draft statement. However an EU diplomat said any future sanctions would be limited. Turkeys ruling AK Party spokesman said on Thursday that the sanctions against Ankara would be a huge mistake for the EU. The EU should act on principles instead of taking the Greek Cypriot side he said. The European Union is ready to ramp up sanctions against Turkey in retaliation to its drilling for gas and oil in the waters off Cyprus. A draft statement seen by Reuters shows the EU is set to curb contacts and funding for Ankara in retaliation for what it calls Turkeys illegal drilling. Turkey has denied it is doing anything illegal on the divided island where a huge discovery of reserves has set off a race to tap into the resources

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