Drones have been deployed by the nation of Cyprus, to monitor Turkish attempts to drill for natural gas in waters claimed by the divided nation. The recent Turkish invasion of Syria, and the overall Middle East uncertainty are few migrant problems already roiling in the region. Thus, Turkey’s action has just added to the tension.
The fact that Turkey invaded Cyprus in 1974 and divided the island in half is an important aspect of understanding the move by Cyprus. Populated mostly by residents of Greek and Turkish ancestry, the island long had been dominated by the more populous Greeks. Mostly people of the island call themselves the Republic of Cyprus, excluding the northern part.
Cyprus purchased Israeli drones and deployed them to shadow the Yaviz ( Turkish drilling ship). Since the introduction of drones, the risk of accidents has increased. Thereby raising the possibility in Turkish eyes that the drones might be used for offensive purposes, and added yet another element of instability into the region.
However, they could be used for offensive military purposes as seen in Saudi Arabia. Facing massive international pressure over his Syrian incursion, it remains a mystery how far Erdogan will be willing to go to prevent Cyprus, Israel, and Greece from developing these Mediterranean gas fields. The failure of the West to stand up to his incursion in Syria may embolden him in other spheres. Regardless, we have likely not heard the last of the Mediterranean gas dispute.