Mike Pompeo: Turkey cannot be allowed to carry out illegal actions in Cyprus

The U.S Secretary of State said his country would take all necessary diplomatic initiatives to make Turkey comply with international law

U.S Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sent a clear message to Turkey from Athens on Saturday regarding its actions in the eastern Mediterranean, stressing it cannot be allowed to conduct illegal drillings inside Cyprus’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

During a joint press conference with his counterpart Nikos Dendias in Athens, Saturday following the top U.S diplomat’s meeting with Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Mr. Pompeo was asked by a journalist about Turkey’s drilling and the measures the Greek side intends to take. The U.S Secretary of State responded that in diplomacy the intended actions are not revealed in advance, adding that the involved risks were apparent and that he was aware of the Turkish activities in the region.

He added that all necessary steps would be taken to avoid militarisation of the issues and to achieve results that are mutually acceptable, adding that Turkey could be allowed to carry out illegal drillings.

On the same issue, Mr Pompeo said that the U.S would take initiatives to ensure that Turkey’s moves in the Cyprus EEZ were legal under international law. He underlined that the United States had made it clear that operations in international waters are carried out under international rules, adding that the U.S had told Turkey that actions in international waters were unacceptable and diplomatic initiatives would be taken to make all actions legal.