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Turkey drills in troubled waters

The deployment of the Yavuz in a section of the Mediterranean claimed by Cyprus pushes the region closer to open conflict

Turkey announced this week that it is “tearing up the maps” in the eastern Mediterranean, with a drillship now searching for gas deposits south-west of Cyprus. The Yavuz, operated by state-owned Turkish Petroleum (TPAO), is stationed in an area already claimed by the Cypriot government. At stake are massive gas deposits discovered by Egypt, Cyprus and Israel, with Turkey insisting it has a right to share in the region’s hydrocarbons boom. Turkish vice president Fuat Oktay said the ship’s deployment was a declaration of intent. “We are tearing up maps in the eastern Mediterranean that were drawn up to imprison us on the mainland.” Turkey has long claimed an area of the Mediterranean it nam

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