- Associated Press - Monday, July 31, 2017

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) - Italy’s defense minister says her country will work with Cyprus to bolster security in the Mediterranean sea.

Roberta Pinotti said after talks with her Cypriot counterpart Monday that the two countries agreed to explore strengthening defense cooperation within the European Union.

Pinotti said the talks covered “common dangers” that both countries face, including illegal migration, weapons smuggling and terrorism.

She said energy security within the Mediterranean was also covered. Italian energy company Eni and France’s Total are currently conducting exploratory drilling about 103 miles off Cyprus‘ southern coast.

The area is close to where Eni discovered a huge gas deposit in Egyptian waters.

Pinotti said she believes that drilling off Cyprus will deliver a “positive result” for all of Europe.


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