By Ovunc Kutlu
ANKARA (AA) - Turkey's Yavuz drilling vessel has reached Guzelyurt-1 well location in the Mediterranean Sea to continue oil and gas exploration activities, the energy and natural resources minister said on Saturday.
"Our Yavuz drilling vessel has arrived at Guzelyurt-1 location," Turkey's Fatih Donmez wrote on Twitter.
"Our ship, which has begun location anchorage activities, will start drilling as soon as possible after completing all of its preparations," he added.
Ahead of its second mission, Yavuz carried out its operations at the Karpaz-1 well, located in the Bay of Gazimagusa, also known as Famagusta, in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC).
Turkey, as a guarantor nation for the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus (TRNC), is currently carrying out hydrocarbon exploration activities in the Eastern Mediterranean with its drilling vessels, Fatih and Yavuz, along with two other seismic vessels that are also operating in the same region.
Turkey has consistently contested the Greek Cypriot administration’s unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting that the TRNC also has rights to the resources in the area.
In 1974, following a coup aiming at Cyprus’s annexation by Greece, Ankara had to intervene as a guarantor power. In 1983, the TRNC was founded.
The decades since have seen several attempts to resolve the Cyprus dispute, all ending in failure. The latest one, held with the participation of the guarantor countries -- Turkey, Greece, and the U.K. -- came to an end without any progress in 2017 in Switzerland.