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Cyprus: Turkey’s drilling bid off island ‘second invasion’

May 6, 2019

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Cyprus’ president is calling Turkey’s bid to drill for natural gas in waters off the island a “second invasion” and a violation of international law.

President Nicos Anastasiades says Turkey’s behavior creates “insurmountable problems” in efforts to restart talks aimed at reunifying ethnically divided Cyprus. He said Monday there can be no talks while the island remains under threat.

Cyprus was split in 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup by supporters of union with Greece.

Turkey doesn’t recognize Cyprus as a state, and it says the Cypriot government’s own offshore gas search infringes on its rights and those of breakaway Turkish Cypriots to the island’s hydrocarbons reserves.

Cyprus says all potential gas proceeds will be shared equitably after a reunification accord.

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