Turkey Maritime Agreement With Libya
Eaton said that if Turkey had already responded to requests from outside actors to reduce arms deliveries to both sides in order to improve the chances of dialogue, the GNA might feel short-circuited. Greece and Cyprus, which have long had maritime and territorial disputes with Turkey, say the agreement is non-stretchable and contrary to international maritime law. They consider this to be a cynical theft of resources aimed at thwarting the development of gas in the eastern Mediterranean and destabilizing its rivals. Turkey and the Tripoli-based Government of the National Agreement (GNA) signed the maritime agreement and a military cooperation agreement in November 2019. In a joint statement of 11 May 2020, Greece, Cyprus, Egypt, as well as France and the United Arab Emirates, condemned the agreement, arguing that it could have “no legal consequences for third countries” because it violated Greece`s sovereign rights and did not violate the law of the sea.  Turkey called the joint statement hypocritical by “a group of countries seeking regional chaos and instability.”  Greece and Turkey have long vied for oil and gas reserves off the disputed island of Cyprus. The conflict has intensified in recent months due to accusations of “moral harassment” by Turkey from Cyprus and EU sanctions. The maritime zone of the eastern Mediterranean, guaranteed by the agreement between Turkey and Libya. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that new relations with Libya “would allow Turkey, with the Tripoli agreement, to legally drill on the Libyan continental shelf… With this new agreement between Turkey and Libya, we will be able to conduct joint exploration operations in these exclusive economic zones that we have defined. There is no problem. The visit comes after Turkey signed an agreement with Libya`s internationally recognized government last month to create an exclusive economic zone from Turkey`s southern Mediterranean coast to Libya`s northeastern coast. As summarized above, it would be, according to the principle of non-intervention of the law, to grant Greece only the maritime areas located near the coast of Turkey (whose coasts are the longest in the eastern Mediterranean). With the agreement on Libya, Turkey won a historic victory and crossed the so-called EEZ line, which seriously violated the rights of the TRNC and the Anatolian coast of 533 nautical miles in the eastern Mediterranean to the west.
The third decisive achievement was the establishment of Libya as a Turkish maritime neighbour and, conversely, by the principle of “creating diagonal lines” because of Turkey`s reversed geographical location on the world map. This situation will allow Turkey (not Greece) to conclude similar agreements with Egypt and Israel in the future. Oktay said that the island should be demilitarized on the basis of agreements, because it is so close to Turkey, but it is now militarized. “This is a direct concern of Turkey,” Oktay said. Ankara says the agreement is aimed at protecting its rights under international law and is open to signing similar agreements with other states on the basis of a “fair distribution” of resources. It is also increasing the deployment with Egypt, which has been at odds with Turkey since the egyptian army ized Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. Many supporters of Morsi`s Muslim Brotherhood are now at home in Turkey. In Libya, Egypt is more closely linked to Haftar, which means that Cairo and Ankara are facing each other over the maritime agreement.