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What Happened: Turkey’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday announced that the country is determined to continue drilling activities in the East Mediterranean Sea to protect the rights of Turkey and Turkish Cypriots. It is stated that the new licence areas that the Turkish Petroleum applied for regarding its exploration and drilling activities lie within Turkish continental shelf as declared to the United Nations. In the statement, ministry spokesperson Hami Aksoy said Turkey will be resolutely continuing to exercise its sovereign rights over the area.

Why is it Important: Turkey and Libya’s U.N.-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) signed two separate pacts on Nov. 27 last year; one ensuring military cooperation and the other on shared maritime boundaries of the countries in the Eastern Mediterranean. The maritime pact asserted Turkey’s rights in the Eastern Mediterranean in the face of unilateral drilling by the Greek Cypriot administration, clarifying that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus also had rights to the resources in the area. The pact took effect on Dec. 8. 2019. This highlights the economic significance of Ankara’s involvement in Libya.

POMPEO: US TO TARGET ICC TO STOP WAR CRIME INVESTIGATIONS

What Happened: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said yesterday that the Trump administration will be releasing a series of announcements against the International Criminal Court (ICC) “in the coming days”, reported The Times of Israel. “I think that the ICC and the world will see that we are determined to prevent having Americans and our friends and allies in Israel and elsewhere hauled in by this corrupt ICC,” he told a podcast hosted by the right-wing American Enterprise Institute think tank.

Why is it Important: The ICC investigation has strained the international body’s relationship with the United States. The American administration has already slapped some sanctions on the ICC, with President Donald Trump threatening to intensify them. The unwillingness or inability of U.S. courts to seriously investigate war crimes carried out by American citizens is part of why the ICC mandate has been viewed as an important effort to bring a minimum level of accountability over the conflict.

 

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