Turkey keeps Greek FM’s airplane in air for additional 20 minutes


The Greek government airplane carrying Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias from Iraq was kept in the air for an additional 20 minutes on Wednesday night as Turkish authorities delayed granting it right of passage.

According to reports on Thursday morning, the airplane requested clearance from Turkish aviation authorities as it crossed the Iraqi border after setting off from Baghdad but had to wait 20 minutes for permission to be granted.

Such a delay of a scheduled diplomatic mission that has received all the necessary permits in advance is considered uncommon and is being seen by Athens as a fresh provocation by Ankara.

The move came hours before European Union leaders meet in Brussels, where Athens is expected to push for a strong response to Turkish aggression in the East Mediterranean and Aegean.