February 23, 2021
Greece’s General Staff has dismissed the Turkish claims that Greek fighter jets harassed the vessel “Cesme” conducting research in international waters in the Aegean Sea.
Claims by Turkish media that fighter jets of the Greek Air Force harassed Turkey’s vessel ‘Cesme’ “bear no relation to reality”, sources at the Hellenic National Defense General Staff (HNDGS) said on Tuesday evening.
They also underlined that a drill was carried out by the Greek Air Force in the central Aegean on Tuesday, after a Notam was first issued on February 9, or 5 days before the day Turkey issued an irregular Navtex.
Some 29 aircraft participated in this air drill, which took off at 13:30 and completed their activity at 14:40. No chaff cartridges or flares were used by the aircraft, it was noted.
The aircraft flew between Agios Efstratios and Kyra-Panagia islands, and also south up to Psara island, while Cesme was sailing in the north side of its area, west of Limnos island, during that time, sources added.
The nearest trace of a Greek aircraft to Cesme was 10 nautical miles at an altitude of 19,000 feet, the HNDGS sources concluded.
Tuesday noon Turkey claimed that Cesme was harassed by Greek fighter jets and that even one of them “dropped chaff cartridge 2 nautical miles away.” Defense Minister Hulusi Akar claimed further that “Turkey responded to the harassment” without explaining how, though.
Published at www.keeptalkinggreece.com