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Turkish PM Criticizes Greek Asylum Body over Coup Suspects

Turkish PM Binali Yildirim (L) with Greek premier Alexis Tsipras (file photo).

Turkey’s prime minister has hit out at the Greek asylum service for green-lighting the applications of two of the eight former Turkish servicemen wanted by Ankara for trial.
However, Binali Yildirim, in a Greek media interview cited by state-run Anadolu Agency, also praised the government in Athens for objecting to the independent committee’s decision to grant asylum to the two men who fled Turkey during the 15 July 2016 coup attempt.
Athens Administrative Appeals Court on May 14 turned down another appeal from the Migration Policy Ministry.
The former Turkish soldier will now remain in hiding and must stay inside the state.
It was the second rejection of a Greek government appeal against a decision to grant asylum to those among eight men who fled Turkey amid the coup which attempted to topple the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Yildirim, speaking on Sunday, insisted the men “actively took part in killing of innocent people and injuring many others. They targeted an elected president”.
He also accused the Greek judiciary of violating the rights of the relatives of those who had lost their lives during the attempted coup.
The case has strained relations between Athens and Ankara, which wants to see the men returned to Turkey for prosecution.
However, Greece’s top court has already ruled that the men would not receive a fair trial, or could face mistreatment, if they are sent back.
Yildirim also said he expected Greece, and its media to, “act more maturely” over incidents in the Aegean Sea.

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