European Union foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini has said it is vital EU states show solidarity with Greece over the case of two of its soldiers being held in Turkey.
Mogherini made the statement in a letter sent to the head of the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee David McAllister on July 5.
“It is therefore vital to continue to showing solidarity with Greece and issuing concerted calls on the Turkish side for the immediate release of the soldiers, either publicly or in bilateral contacts,” Mogherini wrote.
Her intervention comes ahead of a major NATO summit in Brussels at which Greek premier Alexis Tsipras is expected to seek the support of fellow alliance members of the fate of Lieutenant Angelos Mitretodis and Sergeant Dimitris Kouklatzis being held in Edirne.
Greek government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said Tsipras would be raising the issue to exert “maximum pressure” on Turkey to release the men who were detained after accidentally crossing the border at Evros in early March this year.
Greece has been angered after senior figures in Ankara linked the detention of the two men with the case of eight Turkish ex-soldiers applying for asylum in Greece following the July 2016 coup attempt.