Greek Cyprus conducting three naval exercises off southern coast

Three naval exercises are set to take place in the south of Cyprus over the next few days, involving local, regional and international forces in and around the island’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ), the Cyprus Mail reported, quoting the Greek Cypriot Defense Ministry.

The large-scale multinational search and rescue exercise ‘Nemesis’ will take place in the Cyprus EEZ for the fifth consecutive year, beginning on Wednesday it said.

The exercises arrive weeks after a Turkish naval vessels had to intervene after the Turkish survey and drilling vessel, Barbaros, was harassed by a Greek frigate while conducting gas exploration in waters near the divided island of Cyprus. 

The exercise is set to involve a large number of aircraft and personnel from Cyprus and foreign countries and will be coordinated by the Larnaca-based Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) in close cooperation with the rescue coordination centres of participating countries.

A joint exercise between Cyprus and Israel is also scheduled to take place within the coming days, Cyprus Mail said.

The Greek Republic of Cyprus has divided the area it claims in its exclusive economic zone into 13 blocks, in which the rights to drill have provoked high interest due to the potential for huge gas discoveries.