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01:49, 19 March 2018 Monday
Update: 12:19, 24 February 2018 Saturday

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Turkish Cypriots 'must be part' of drilling decisions
Turkish Cypriots 'must be part' of drilling decisions

Will of Turkish Cypriot people must be included in gas drilling process in the Mediterranean, says Turkish Cypriot premier

World Bulletin / News Desk

There is no justification for excluding the will of Turkish Cypriot people in drilling activities around the island, said Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus’ (TRNC) premier on Friday, rebuffing Greek Cyprus’ unilateral natural gas drilling efforts.

Tufan Erhurman stressed that Turkish Cypriots are one of the two main elements to decide and manage the area's natural resources.

His reaction comes amid the ongoing row between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots over an Italian drilling ship trying to do gas exploration in the Mediterranean Sea.

The ship was blocked by the Turkish navy before reaching the area.

Erhurman added that merely getting some share of the natural wealth in the Mediterranean would not be enough, but that the Turkish Cypriot people should be part of the management and decision-making process of the region’s natural resources.

Erhurman said the creation of a committee including both essential elements of the process would be the right approach.

"No excuse can justify the execution of will of the Turkish Cypriot people,” he added.

"Of course, we [the TRNC] will continue this work together with Turkey," he said, adding that Foreign Minister Kudret Ozersay was appointed to follow the process.

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