MIDEAST > Turkish pilots killed by Syrian intelligence, Al Arabiya claims

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

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Two Turkish pilots thought to have perished when their jet was shot down by Damascus on June 22 were actually rescued, interrogated and murdered by Syrian intelligence services, secret documents released tonight by Saudi Arabia’s Al Arabiya news channel purport to show.

“Two Turkish pilots were captured by the Syrian Air Force Intelligence after their jet was shot down in coordination with the Russian naval base in [the Syrian city of] Tartus,” according to a document released by Al-Arabiya that was allegedly sent directly from President Bashar al-Assad’s office to Brig. Hassan Abdel Rahman, the chief of Syria’s Special Operations Unit.


The document reportedly ordered the concerned parties to treat the two pilots, Air Force Cpt. Gökhan Ertan and Air Force Lt. Hasan Hüseyin Aksoy, according to the protocol of war prisoners, while also requesting that both men be investigated about Turkey’s role in supporting the Free Syrian Army, the main group of opposition militants fighting to overthrow Syria’s government.


The documents suggest the possibility of transferring Ertan and Aksoy into the custody of Syrian ally Hezbollah in Lebanon, but a subsequent file expressed the need to “eliminate” the two pilots. “Based on information and guidance from the Russian leadership, comes a need to eliminate the two Turkish pilots detained by the Special Operations Unit in a natural way, and their bodies need to be returned to the crash site in international waters,” the document said.

The documents, which have not been independently verified, were obtained with the assistance of members of the Syrian opposition, who refused to explain how they accessed the files.

Turkey has long said Syria shot the pilots’ plane down in international waters, while Syria has claimed it shot the plane down in its territorial waters with an anti-aircraft gun.

There was no immediate comment from the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

To read the full story, click on http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/09/29/240805.html


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Notice on comments

Turk Uzan

9/30/2012 6:30:03 PM

@ Diren Sesel, you can't be serious? Al Jazeera is essentially the English Al Arabiya, it's the BBC's Arab wing, Al Jazeera always, ALWAYS protects Saudi interest. Al Jazeera is BBC's way of reaching to the Arab public, but since it's mostly sponsored by the Emir of Qatar and the Saudi royals etc, it's essentially their propaganda machine. The BBC set the channel up with investment from the Emir of Qatar, because BBC got censored by the Saudis for negative news on the Saudi's,

Ahmetcan Caglayan

9/30/2012 5:25:44 PM

Though it's hard to accept, I believe the pilots were captured. There are enough eyewitnesses on the ground. In order to "cover up" being captured, they were executed because dead men don't talk. If they were released after being tortured, there would be cries for war in Turkey.

ealsho@eartlink.net tango73

9/30/2012 3:37:53 PM

This is a stupid story. The pilots were recovered, the pilots did not ejected from the plane. Therefore they could not be killed and inserted back. Typical 1001 night story. Surprised so many comentators and HDN failed for the story.

Jobs jon

9/30/2012 2:59:02 PM

Many newspaper and TV sources have already said that "The plane's wreckage, with the bodies of the its two crew members still trapped inside, was found on the Mediterranean seabed in early July." Based on the little fact, one can easily judge that Al-Arabiya's claim is not credible. They based on some instructions from other rivals are trying to drag Turkey into a direct conflict with Syria, Iran and Russia. But they will fail as the Turks are nor stupid.

Diren Sesel

9/30/2012 2:47:10 PM

Al Arabiya is the opposite of Al Jazeera, a lot of false information, and pro monarchist.

Sev Cihan

9/30/2012 2:22:02 PM

propaganda, how can come that people who fear intellegence have such information?

david ellison

9/30/2012 12:24:20 PM

Should the great Turkish people be a little worried about the competence of their leadership? Need more examples of a leadership more concerned about its popularity? Better to demonstrate about a stupid video than report honestly. Welcome Turkey to the Arab World

Shah Hamdan

9/30/2012 10:11:19 AM

The Saudis who cant even clean their nose are providing intelligence information. Turkey couldn't find with all its intelligence and links in Syria what Saudis are claiming to have.There is no doubt it must be CIA or Mossad feeding them this misinformation to push Turkey further in Syrian chaos. Last couple of weeks Turkish government took some sensible steps to control this conflict. Saudis are trying to inflame this cooling situation. Saudis did not come to help refugees but are inflaming war.

Sid Mark

9/30/2012 9:29:52 AM

Saudi Arabia is trying to involve Russia in the mess created by USA and NATO.The increasing energy role of Russia downgrades Saudis interests.In an accident among the first to receive a blow will be Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

Burak Miron

9/30/2012 9:20:04 AM

Following are a few questions that need to be directed to the Turkish Airforce. 1 - When a Pilot ejects an automated homer device is activated - Did the pilots Bail out ? Were the homing devices activated ? 2- What was the direct cause leading to the crew's loss of life ? Was did the post m - inspections indicate ? 3- After the crash was any Syrian/other activity noted in the crash area ? ? When ? where? What kind of activity ?
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