For the first time this year, Turkey is reserving areas for illegal exercise very close to the coast of Turkish-occupied Famagusta, CNA has learnt.
According to the same information, “the new illegal Navtex issued by Turkey to conduct a search and rescue exercise next week off the occupied Famagusta is repeated every year. The exercise culminates in June, when Turkey’s major exercise in the occupied areas of Cyprus is held.”
CNA sources also said that “usually the areas reserved by Turkey for the conduct of this exercise are located in the open sea. However, for the first time this year the areas committed reach the coast of occupied Famagusta.”
It is noted that the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre issued an anti-Navtex informing that Turkey’s exercise “is illegal and constitutes a violation of the territory of the Republic of Cyprus, international law and maritime security procedures”.
It added that “the only authorised station in the area of responsibility of the Republic of Cyprus is the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre”.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.