Deployment of Saudi military elements to the largest oil field in Syria, al-Omar, with an excuse of protecting the Saudi oil experts in the field last week, and news regarding the expropriation of a Turkish-crewed ship in the Mediterranean by the coast guard forces loyal to eastern Libya-based warlord Khalifa Haftar redrew attention to the Eastern Mediterranean policy of the UAE-Saudi axis.

The UAE-Saudi axis, traditionally in favor of the status-quo, has developed its recent policy in the Eastern Mediterranean just after the signing of the Turkey-Libya Maritime Boundary Delimitation Agreement, which can be interpreted as an attempt to transfer its geopolitical rivalry with Turkey to the Eastern Mediterranean region.

News regarding the Turkish and Israeli authorities being “ready for collaboration” on the construction of a pipeline transporting natural gas from the Eastern Mediterranean to Europe, and Egypt’s state-owned natural gas firm taking part in a 7-billion cubic meters liquefied natural gas auction organized by BOTAS — Turkey’s state-owned, natural gas pipelines and trading company — for the 2020-2023 period add to the odds that the issue is related to natural gas resources.

Egypt and Israel not having a choice but to collaborate with Turkey to be able to transport a considerable amount of their natural gas reserves to Europe has the potential of weakening the ties of the UAE-Saudi axis with these countries.

Read more: Eastern Mediterranean policy of UAE-Saudi axis creates tensions