Last week’s discovery of natural gas reserves in the Black Sea is a prelude to upcoming good news from the Mediterranean, said Turkey’s president on Monday.
There is substantial evidence that the natural gas discovery foreshadows a much bigger gas find, and hopefully the good news will continue, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said after a Cabinet meeting at the presidential complex.
Erdogan also expressed sympathy to all the people affected by the devastating floods in Giresun, northeastern Turkey.
"Disasters like earthquakes, floods have forced us to change our priorities. We have started realizing our aims with urban transformation and new construction plans [...] We will leave a liveable Turkey behind us," he said.
The death toll from the floods has risen to eight, with at least 12 people injured, said Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu on Monday.
The floodwaters also demolished 17 buildings and slightly damaged 361 structures.
- Greece's Navtex alert ‘spoiled act’
Erdogan also called Monday’s Greek Navtex alert a “spoiled act” that endangers the coastal and navigational safety of all ships in the region.
Athens’ Navtex said its air and naval forces would hold joint exercises in an area overlapping with the one Turkey declared on Sunday.
From now on, Greece will be responsible for all conflicts in the region, and will be at a disadvantage, added Erdogan.
The Turkish ship Oruc Reis and the vessels accompanying it will not retreat from their activities in the region, he said.
Turkey on Sunday issued a Navtex (navigational alert) announcing a four-day extension to the Oruc Reis' energy exploration.
Navtex is a maritime communications system that allows ships to inform other vessels about their presence in an area, as well as other information.
Turkey resumed energy exploration earlier this month in the Eastern Mediterranean after Greece and Egypt signed a controversial maritime delimitation deal.
Greece and other countries have tried to box in Turkey’s maritime territory and energy exploration rights, despite no country having a longer coastline on the Mediterranean.
- Turkey's fight with terrorism
The kind of mentality which sides with terrorist groups instead of supporting democratic countries has come into US politics, said Erdogan, in reference to Turkey's fight against YPG/PKK terrorists.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and the European Union – has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the PKK’s terrorist Syrian branch.
Despite the YPG’s terrorist status, the US has supported it as a supposed ally against Daesh/ISIS in northern Syria.
"A mentality which looks the other way when our country is being attacked by terrorists and hopes to see the results when we face a coup is a stain on the name of democracy," Erdogan said, referring to recently controversial remarks by US Democratic Party presidential nominee Joe Biden.
In a video clip that went viral, Biden said: "We can support those elements of the Turkish leadership that still exist and get more from them and embolden them to be able to take on and defeat Erdogan. Not by a coup, not by a coup, but by the electoral process."
By Firdevs Bulut Kartal