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British minister says 'deplores' any drill close to Cyprus

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ATHENS (Reuters) – A British minister on Friday said Britain ‘deplored’ any drilling in waters close to Cyprus as a row escalated between Nicosia and Turkey, which was poised to start searching for oil and gas south of the island.

“I made it very clear that Great Britain deplores any drilling in waters close to Cyprus but supports Cyprus’s right to extract oils in its exclusive economic zone,” said British Minister of State for Europe, Christopher Pincher.

Any oil wealth, he said, should be extracted to the benefit of all Cypriots.

Pincher was speaking in Nicosia after a meeting with Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades.

British minister for europe pincher says britain ‘deplores any drilling in waters close to cyprus’, supports cyprus right to extract hydrocarbons

British minister for europe, speaking in nicosia, says any oil wealth around cyprus should be extracted to the benefit of all people on the island

(Reporting By Michele Kambas)

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