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Ignoring Warning Shots, Turkish Jets Invade Greek Airspace Again

April 12, 2018

Warning shots fired at a Turkish helicopter that flew over the islet of Ro near Kastellorizo off the Turkish coast didn’t keep F-4 fighter jets from continuing to violate Greek airspace without any warning from NATO, to which both countries belong.

The decision to fire tracer shots at the helicopter flying without lights was a sign that Greece, while wanting to provoke a conflict, is serious about defending itself, unidentified officials told Kathimerini.

Turkey ignored it and sent two F-4 fighters over Panagia and Oinousses. The violations are regular and taxing to Greece’s defenses as Greek fighter pilots must intercept the Turkish jets and sometimes engage them in mock dogfights.

Government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said that, “There is obviously concern with respect to the constant provocations that form the core of Turkey’s foreign policy – especially at this extremely crucial period when certain events could lead to even more instability,” adding that Turkey’s military excursions into Syria have complicated matters.

The commander of Turkey’s armed forces, Hulusi Akar,  while his country wants to resolve issues in the Aegean where it is violating Greek airspace and waters that Turkey wants a “sea of peace,” while critics what it really wants control of the sea.

Turkey’s pro-government Yeni Safak newspaper said that Turkey could be provoked to strike a Greek ship in the Aegean so that Turkey is targeted by the West without explaining what that would mean.

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