Greece to formally protest to Turkey over airspace allegation

Greece's defence ministry accused Turkish fighter jets of violating Greek airspace, harassing a military aircraft searching for a boat loaded with illegal immigrants.

Greece to formally protest to Turkey over airspace allegation

Greece will formally protest to NATO ally Turkey over airspace alleged violations by Turkish fighter jets in the eastern Mediterranean, Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyanni said on Wednesday.

Greece's defence ministry accused Turkish fighter jets of violating Greek airspace, harassing a military aircraft searching for a boat loaded with illegal immigrants in the Aegean Sea.

"These Turkish acts are outrageous," Bakoyanni said in a statement.

"I have given instructions for a diplomatic protest to be issued. The actions harm efforts to improve Greek-Turkish relations."

Turkey and Greece have longstanding territorial and other disputes. Greece claims a 10 nautical-mile air exclusion zone over its territory, including islands close to the Turkish coast. Turkey recognises only a six nautical-mile zone.

Greece's defence ministry said Turkish jets entered the Athens Flight Information Region (FIR) without submitting flight plans. Turkey says its military aircraft are not obliged to submit plans.

Reuters
Last Mod: 08 Ocak 2009, 12:27
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