15 September 2020
The ECR group expresses its concern with Turkey’s actions in the Eastern Mediterranean as they infringe on the legitimate rights of Greece and Cyprus in their maritime zones.
Turkey is an important partner of the EU and is expected, as a candidate country, to uphold the highest standards of democracy, including respect for human rights, the rule of law and the principles of International Law, including the Law of the Sea.
Turkey should cease its drilling and research activities within the Cypriot and Greek EEZ and to refrain from any activities that could further raise tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean.
We emphasize the strategic importance for the EU of the Eastern Mediterranean, with a view to diversifying the EU’s energy supply, making ourselves less dependent of Russia.
Furthermore, we denounce Turkey’s recent decision to turn Hagia Sophia and the Chora church into mosques. These developments will have a negative impact across the range of EU-Turkey relations.
We call on the European Union to facilitate a dialogue with Turkey, and encourage all sides to prioritise diplomacy over far-reaching unilateral actions.
16 September 2020