EU imposes sanctions on two people over Turkey’s hydrocarbon drilling off Cyprus

Drilling vessel Scarabeo 9, owned by Italian oil service group Saipem, sails in the Bosphorus in Istanbul, Turkey May 21, 2018. (Reuters)
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Updated 27 February 2020

EU imposes sanctions on two people over Turkey’s hydrocarbon drilling off Cyprus

  • The move followed November’s decision to impose economic sanctions
  • Turkey says says it is operating in waters on its own continental shelf or areas where Turkish Cypriots have rights

BRUSSELS: The European Union on Thursday imposed sanctions on two individuals over their role in Turkey drilling for hydrocarbons off the coast of Cyprus, subjecting them to travel bans to the bloc and asset freezes.
The European Council did not name them. The move followed November’s decision to impose economic sanctions.
“These persons are responsible for or involved in planning, directing and implementing offshore hydrocarbon exploration activities in the Eastern Mediterranean which have not been authorized by the Republic of Cyprus,” it said in a statement.
Cyprus’s internationally recognized government discovered offshore gas in 2011 but has been at loggerheads with Turkey over maritime zones around the island, where it has granted licenses to multinational companies for oil and gas research.
Turkey, which does not have diplomatic relations with Cyprus’s government, says it is operating in waters on its own continental shelf or areas where Turkish Cypriots have rights.
Ankara has for years sought to join the European Union, the world’s biggest trading bloc, but has run into opposition from some EU countries.


UK to reopen thousands of shops in easing of coronavirus lockdown, says Boris Johnson

Updated 25 May 2020

UK to reopen thousands of shops in easing of coronavirus lockdown, says Boris Johnson

  • From June 1, outdoor markets and car showrooms could be reopened
  • Johnson is keen to restart an economy which has been all but shut down since Britain entered a lockdown

LONDON: Britain will reopen thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centers next month, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday, setting out a timetable for businesses as part of moves to ease the coronavirus lockdown.
He told a news conference that from June 1, outdoor markets and car showrooms could be reopened as soon as they are able to meet the COVID-19 secure guidelines, and all other non-essential retail from June 15 if the government’s tests are met.
Johnson is keen to restart an economy which has been all but shut down since Britain entered a lockdown to try to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus, but also fears a second peak of infection if measures are eased too quickly.

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“Today, I want to give the retail sector notice of our intentions to reopen shops, so they too can get ready,” Johnson said. “There are careful but deliberate steps on the road to rebuilding our country.”
The government said shops selling clothes, shoes, toys, furniture, books, and electronics, plus tailors, auction houses, photography studios, and indoor markets, would be expected to be able to reopen from June 15, giving them three weeks to prepare.
It said that businesses would only be able to open from those dates once they had completed a risk assessment, in consultation with trade union representatives or workers, and are confident they are managing the risks.
“The high street sits at the heart of every community in the country,” Business minister Alok Sharma said in a statement.
“Enabling these businesses to open will be a critical step on the road to rebuilding our economy, and will support millions of jobs across the UK.”