Yet, Turkey keeps pushing the energy issue- As in, Turkey wants the resources in the waters around Cyprus- How is this playing into the bigger picture in that area?
As Turkey encroaches on Cyprus the EU tells Turkey "New chapters won't be opened until the Cyprus issue resolved"
NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) Cyprus says it's considering additional ways to respond to Turkey's planned gas search in waters where it has already licensed companies to drill.
Cyprus government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said Monday that further "political, diplomatic and legal" steps are being weighed after a warship-escorted Turkish research vessel sailed into waters off the island's south coast.
The steps will be announced Tuesday after President Nicos Anastasiades completes consultations with party leaders.
Cyprus was split along ethnic lines in 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup by supporters of union with Greece. Turkey doesn't recognize Cyprus as a state and opposes its offshore energy search.
Matern von Marschall, who is a member of the Committee on the Affairs of the European Union from the Christian Democratic Union/Christian Socialist Union (CDU/CSU), told a small group of Turkish journalists in Berlin that the German government is not going to support the opening of Chapters 23 and 24, which refer to fundamental rights and justice, before the Cyprus issue has been solved.
“We will not disconnect those issues,” he said, adding that this is also the position of the EU, in contrast with Turkey's stance, which evaluates the Cyprus dispute separately.
He made the statement in answer to questions from a few Turkish journalists, shortly after Turkey's fresh EU Minister and Chief Negotiator Volkan Bozkır visited Berlin to tell Germany that Turkey is fully committed to entering the 28-member bloc.
The EU began accession talks with Turkey on 35 negotiating chapters in 2005, but there has been little progress since then, amid opposition to Turkish membership in some EU countries, including Germany, and the unresolved Cyprus dispute.
Asked whether Germany would open Chapters 23 and 24 if Cyprus unblocked them, he said, “This could be possible.”