Turkey has embarked on a ‘beggar thy neighbour’ policy in the eastern Mediterranean involving diplomatic and military pressure, as its long-term political and economic interests are threatened by quicker-than-expected advances towards the establishment of a regional gas hub centred on Egypt and involving Cyprus, Israel and possibly even Lebanon. Italy’s Eni, the leading exploration company in the region, is in the firing line. In early February, the Turkish government picked fights over hydrocarbons exploration rights with Cyprus and – more surprisingly considering they are divided by the entire width of the eastern Mediterranean and share no borders – with Egypt.