The members of European Union states came to a consensus on Friday that EU should impose sanctions on Turkey for carrying out illegal drilling in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of Cyprus.
After the discussion, the Presidency of the Council and the EU Representative Federica Mogherini, the delegation of Cypriot succeeded in convincing and changing the words of the final statement about Turkey if it insists on continuing the drilling campaign. However, the intensity of the measures or sanctions is still yet to be revealed.
The conclusion of the draft revealed that The European Council calls on the European Commission and the high representative will keep working to on restrictions against Turkey if they don’t stop drilling in Cyprus.
The final verdict and modified text say, that “The council will explore other options if Turkey continues its activities – thus removing any uncertainties created by the previous wording.”
The EU28 has built consensus to suspend negotiations on the Comprehensive Air Transport Agreement with Turkey. Furthermore, the suspension of the restriction of pre-accession assistance for 2020, and stopping the funds from the European Investment Bank.
Before getting the final approval, this matter of sanctions on Turkey will be discussed on Monday, by the Foreign Affairs Council. In response to this, Mevlut Cavusoglu, the Turkish Foreign Minister, defiantly said on Friday that EU pressure is futile.
He said that “The steps that it [EU] would take towards us would be useless, it would backlash.” He further added that the EU should not “stand behind the wrong” and warned that Turkey would take “additional steps” if any action is taken against it.
His defiant response against the probable restrictions on Turkey indicates that Turkey will continue its drilling and that it will deal with such undue pressure in a befitting manner.