Our legal Aegean flights no threat to Greece: Ankara

Our legal Aegean flights no threat to Greece: Ankara

ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
Our legal Aegean flights no threat to Greece: Ankara

Greece calling Turkey's flights over the Aegean Sea a “threat” is incompatible with alliance and good neighborly relations, said Turkey on March 15, in the latest rejoinder in the countries' Aegean dispute.       

A Greek Foreign Ministry statement on Turkey's military activities in the Aegean was “odd” in both its timing and content, Hami Aksoy, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson, said in a statement.       

Turkey believes the free use of international airspace over the Aegean should not constitute a contentious issue between the two countries, said Aksoy.       

"Greece, on the other hand, claims 10 miles of airspace beyond six miles of territorial waters in clear contradiction of international law,” he added.       

"The fact that Greece perceives Turkey's flights- which are in accordance with international law- as a threat, and presents them as violations is in no way compatible with alliance solidarity and good neighborly relations,” said Aksoy, referring to NATO, which both Turkey and Greece belong to.       

On March 14, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that if Greece sends out fighter jets to intercept Turkish F-16s over the Aegean, it should not be surprised if Turkey responds to Greek flights the same way.       

"If you take off, my [fighter jet] will also take off," he said in a televised interview.       

But the Greek Foreign Ministry had called Erdogan's remarks "completely unacceptable," claiming that Turkey's flights violate Greek sovereignty.