Turkey has said that a recent announcement reserving a large swath of airspace over the Aegean Sea for Turkish military manoeuvres until the end of the year was issued by mistake.
The original notice which had sparked an outraged response from the Greek government, was cancelled.
In a statement on Tuesday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic said that the Notice to Airmen, or NOTAM, was published in error “with an inaccurate coordinate“. He gave no further details.
The statement issued by the Turkish Foreign Ministry on 3rd March, 2015, at its official website (http://www.mfa.gov.tr/default.tr.mfa) on the issue is as follows:
“The issue of long period dangerous areas declared by Greece and Turkey in the Aegean has been on the agenda for a long time. Last year, we proposed to Greece to mutually cancel those areas. However, we have not received from the Greek side any positive response yet. We are willing to find a timely solution to this issue within the framework of the Confidence-Building Measures talks between Turkey and Greece. For this purpose, the latest NOTAM issued erroneously with an inaccurate coordinate has been cancelled, and at this stage no new dangerous area will be declared for a certain period of time. On the other hand, our position based on the principle of reciprocity is reserved with regard to this issue by all means. On this occasion, we reiterate our call to the recently formed Government of Greece to approach the existing issues between our countries in a constructive manner and by making use of the available diplomatic channels of dialogue”.