ATHENS — Greece plans to ratify an accord on maritime boundaries with Egypt next week, its government said on Thursday, referring to a deal which has angered Turkey and highlighted overlapping claims over the eastern Mediterranean.
Egypt and Greece sealed the accord defining maritime zones on Aug 6. It was ratified by Egypt’s parliament on Aug. 18, and Greek government spokesman Stelios Petsas said it was being submitted to the Greek parliament with a view to it being ratified on Aug. 26.
Yet Turkey has said the pact infringes its own continental shelf and has dispatched a survey vessel to an area between Crete and Cyprus. The agreement also overlaps with maritime zones Turkey agreed with Libya last year, decried as illegal by Greece.
Maritime zones, or exclusive economic zones, give state rights over natural resources. Largely unexplored, the East Mediterranean is thought to be rich in natural gas. Zohr, the largest gas field in the Mediterranean, was found off Egypt in 2015.