Greece offers to help find Turkish F-16 lost in 1996

Greece officially offered on Thursday to assist Turkey in its efforts to locate and salvage a Turkish Air Force fighter jet which crashed in the Aegean almost 20 years ago.

Greek Defense Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos called his Turkish counterpart Ismet Yilmaz to inform him of Athens’s willingness to held find the F-16, which crashed near Chios in October 1996. The plane’s pilot, Captain Nail Erdogan, was killed in the crash.

Authorities in Greece have always maintained that the plane went down due to mechanical failure. In 2003, however, a former Turkish naval commander alleged that the jet had been shot down by mistake by a Greek pilot. Athens denied the claim.