Greece releases former Turkish soldier accused of terror links by Turkey
Greek authorities released from custody on April 27 one of the eight former Turkish servicemen who fled to the country in a military helicopter seeking asylum, just after Turkey’s failed military coup in 2016.
Süleyman Özkaynakçı, the co-pilot of the helicopter that was used to flee Turkey, was taken to an undisclosed address. Özkaynakçı was not granted a travel warrant and will appear daily at a police station.
Özkaynakçı had previously been released briefly after being granted asylum but was arrested again after the Greek government raised the objection over the asylum.
The Greek Council of State, the country’s highest administrative court, evaluated the government’s objection and on April 19 ruled for Özkaynakçı’s release under strict control until the results of asylum applications of all eight suspected coup plotters emerge.
The Council of State is expected to make a final decision over the asylum requests of all the eight ex-Turkish soldiers on May 4.
The eight former Turkish soldiers—three majors, three captains and two sergeant majors—flew to Greece by helicopter on July 16, 2016 as the coup attempt crumbled. In their testimonies, they have denied any involvement and said they had feared for their lives.