Turkish survey ship sets out for waters off Cyprus

By REUTERS
September 23, 2011 15:41

ISTANBUL - A Turkish oil exploration vessel left the Aegean port of Izmir on Friday to carry out surveys off northern Cyprus amid tensions with Greek Cypriots on the divided island over rights to hydrocarbon reserves in the eastern Mediterranean.

There was no sign of a Turkish naval escort for the Piri Reis and its 10 crew as the vessel set out, although Energy Minister Taner Yildiz had raised the possibility of such a security measure earlier this week.

Regional tension rose after Cyprus's Greek Cypriot government announced on Tuesday that drilling had begun in a southeast offshore area adjoining a gas field in Israeli waters reputed to be the world's largest find in the past decade.


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