Turkey, Libya maritime deal sent to UN: Erdoğan
Turkey’s maritime boundary delimitation agreement with Libya was sent to the United Nations, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Dec. 7.
Erdoğan said the deal -- already signed by the president -- was ratified by the parliament and published on Dec. 7's Official Gazette, going into effect.
On Nov. 27, Turkey and Libya’s Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) signed the bilateral memorandum of understanding (MoU).
Speaking at the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) consultation meeting of provincial heads in Istanbul, Erdoğan said Turkey will use its rights under international law and international maritime law till the end on Eastern Mediterranean.
Erdoğan also slammed Greece over its expulsion of the Libyan ambassador, dubbing it as a "scandalous" move. "What did you gain from this?"
Turkey called on the regional countries to work in a collective manner regarding the distribution of hydrocarbon reserves, which have an estimated value of hundreds of billions of dollars and turn the natural sources into an opportunity to boost bilateral ties and neighboring relations.
However, Ankara’s calls have fallen on deaf ears so far and some countries attempted to isolate Turkey from the energy equation. Turkey maintains drilling activities in the Mediterranean region under escort of the country’s navy elements.
'Turkey is in Syria by the demand of Syrian people'
The president also said that Turkey is not to leave Syria unless foreign countries withdraw from the region. He added that Turkey is in Syria by the demand of the Syrian people.
"We are the ones who cleared the region of 3,000 Daesh terrorists. There is no other country in this world putting up this fight," he said, using the Arabic acronym of ISIL.
Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate YPG/PKK terrorists from northern Syria east of the Euphrates River in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
Under two separate deals with the U.S. and Russia, Turkey paused the operation to allow the withdrawal of YPG/PKK terrorists from the planned Syria safe zone.
Prior to this, Turkey led two successful operations, Olive Branch and Euphrates Shield, in northern Syria to rid the region of terrorists.
The U.S.-backed SDF, a group dominated by the YPG, has been controlling some 28 percent of the Syrian territories, including the most of the 911-kilometer-long Syria-Turkey border.
Turkey deems the YPG the Syrian offshoot of the illegal PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization also by the United States and the EU.