ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Turkish Chief of General Staff Necdet Özel is seen with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his wife, Emine Erdoğan, at the reception given by Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek on the occasion of the opening of the new legislative year, in Ankara, Oct. 1. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZ
Turkish Chief of General Staff Necdet Özel has attempted to dismiss concerns over a military plane that crashed in the Central Anatolian district of Sivas on Sept. 30, injuring the pilots who managed to escape the crash with their parachutes.
"I trust my pilots and my technicians. The maintenance of our planes is excellent," Özel told reporters at the reception given by Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek
on the occasion of the opening of the new legislative year Oct. 1.
He added that an internal investigation had been launched into the incident. "Every hour, 25 to 30 military planes fly in our airspace. Don't accidents happen on the road?" he said.
Both pilots managed to prevent the plane from crashing into a boarding school and managed to jump out at low altitude moments before the crash, reports have said.Armed Forces 'fully democratized'
Özel also underscored the efforts being made for transparency inside the military. "We have published on the general staff website things that have never been published before. Every month we publish the incidents at the borders, as well as internal security [issues]. We share everything with the public openly and transparently," he said.
"As the Turkish Armed Forces, we have fully completed democratization," he added.
Alongside Özel, the commanders-in-chief of the army also attended the reception.