NEWS

NATO calls for boost in forces

NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer called on member states yesterday to increase alliance forces in Afghanistan but stopped short of making any specific requests from the Greek government. De Hoop Scheffer, in Athens on a one-day visit, said that NATO is facing shortages in Afghanistan and that any ally who could fill these shortages should do so. «I did not make any specific requests to the Greek government,» he said after meeting with Foreign Affairs Minister Dora Bakoyannis. Greece has a small force of army engineers and medical personnel in Afghanistan. Regarding a collision between Greek and Turkish fighter jets in May that resulted in the death of a Greek pilot, the secretary-general said that he was concerned over the incident but also satisfied over measures discussed. «Let me say that I have seen to my satisfaction that a number of confidence-building measures have been discussed. That is the way we should go when there are incidents like this between two allies,» he said.