Greek soldiers are not subject to an exchange, says Turkish deputy PM


The two Greek soldiers who have been imprisoned in Edirne since straying into Turkish territory during a regular border patrol near the northeastern border last month are not subject to an exchange, Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on Sunday, seeking to dissociate the issue from the eight Turkish servicemen whom Turkey wants extradited.

Bozdag was revisiting a subject that has soured relations between the two countries, as it followed Greece’s refusal to extradite the eight Turkish officials who fled their country after the foiled coup attempt of July 2016.

“The two Greek soldiers held in the prison in Edirne are not subject to an exchange,” he was quoted as saying by Turkish media.

In a series of tweets on Saturday, Bozdag slammed the “unjust and provocative statements” of some Greek ministers which he said will not benefit Greece, and warned that “viewing Turkey's stance as a weakness is neither clever nor far-sighted."