The discovery of hydrocarbons in Eastern Mediterranean waters was quickly followed by a resur-gence in territorial disputes and nationalistic fervour which have further complicated efforts to re-solve the decades-old Cyprus conflict. The war of words between Turkey and Greece over mari-time rights in the eastern Mediterranean, partly stemming from the unresolved conflict over the di-vided island of Cyprus, nearly came to boiling point last summer. Ankara, excluded from plans by the Republic of Cyprus, Egypt, Israel and Greece to run a pipeline to Europe, sent its own drill ships into contested waters surrounding Cyprus, as well as south of the Greek island of Kastel-lorizo. The latest push undertaken by Guterres and the UN to break the deadlock also failed in April 2021 when the Secretary-General declared that there was not “enough common ground” to allow for the resumption of formal talks.
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