Drillship Saipem 12000 leaves for Morocco as Macron calls upon Ankara to respect Cyprus’ sovereignty

On Monday, just before midnight, Italian oil giant ENI mobilized the drillship “Saipem 12000” which was anchored in the past few days, as it was blocked from Turkish warships from reaching offshore block 3, claiming they were conducting military exercises in the region.

ENI ordered the drillship to go to Morocco in order to start drilling the RD-1 well, located on the Rabat Deep Permits in Morocco where Eni is the operator with a 40% interest, following ENI’s CEO Claudio Descalzi’s announcement last week. Of course, he stressed that this move did not mean that ENI would relinquish its interests in the region, but would wait for the “for international, European, Turkish, Greek and Cypriot diplomacy to find a solution”.

It is reminded that Ankara accused the Cypriot government of of unilaterally conducting hydrocarbon exploration only for the benefit of the Greek side, without taking into consideration the Turkish Cypriots’ interests.

President Nicos Anastasiades’ response was swift as he highlighted that the government’s “goal is to fully explore Cyprus’s hydrocarbon potential, in the best terms possible, so as to maximize the benefits for all the people of Cyprus”.

On Monday, French President Emmanuel Macron, during a phone call with his Tukrish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan, underlined the need for Turkey to respect Cyprus’ sovereignty. He also conveyed his concerns about the developments in the Cypriot EEZ, after Cyprus on Friday accused Turkey of threatening to use force against the drillship, according to Reuters.

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