Turks ‘disturbed’ by Israel, Cyprus natural gas ties
Israel’s decision to become an active partner with Cyprus on issues of natural gas – despite the island nation’s unsolved political disputes with Turkey – has left Ankara "disturbed” by its ally, according to a Turkish expert.
"Turkey feels a little bit disturbed,” Prof. Mitat Celikpala of Kadir Has University in Istanbul told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. "Not betrayed, not put aside, but a little bit disturbed from all those happenings. What we want is to solve the Cyprus issue first, and then we cooperate. There is no question mark.”
While Celikpala said he understands that Israel, like every country, has its own economic and trade interests, as a "partner and ally of Turkey,” it behooves the state to work together with its northern neighbor.
Celikpala spoke with the Post on the sidelines of a conference titled "Natural Gas in the Eastern Mediterranean: Casus Belli or Chance for Regional Cooperation?” held Thursday at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) in Tel Aviv, where he was a speaker. The conference – which took a comprehensive look at the legal, geopolitical and regional cooperation implications of the region’s natural gas finds – was organized jointly by the INSS, Israeli-European Policy Network, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Academic Foundation, Universität der Bundeswhr Munchen and the Macro Center for Political Economics.
Experts and conference attendees included representatives from around the world, including Israel, Turkey, EU states, the US, Canada and others, and notably, the ambassadors from Cyprus, Austria and Belgium. (...)