Turkey requests extradition of eight soldiers who fled to Greece

Turkey has officially requested the extradition of eight members of the Turkish military who fled to Greece via helicopter amid the chaos of July's failed coup.

Foreign Ministry officials in Athens said they had received the request and had passed it on to the Justice Ministry for consideration, state radio reported on Thursday.

On July 15, a faction of Turkey's military announced it was seizing power in a night of aerial dogfights, military blockades and street clashes that left more than 260 people dead. The government quickly crushed the attempted putsch and has since purged tens of thousands from the state's military and judicial branches.

The absconding soldiers - two majors, four captains and two non-commissioned officers - fled in a military helicopter to the Greek port city of Alexandroupolis, near the Turkish border, and immediately applied for asylum.

Ankara has stressed in the formal extradition request that the soldiers tried to overthrow the government, according to the state radio report.

The first asylum hearings to determine their fate are scheduled for Friday in Athens.

Last update: Thu, 18/08/2016 - 15:06

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