Turkey decided to impede NATO’s “Tiger Meet” Drill:
Turkey decided not to participate or impede in NATO’s Tiger Meet Drill because Athens exploited its disagreements with Ankara as well as Targeted Turkey by making changes to the drill’s technical regulations, which were contrary to the International Law. The demands of Turkey were not accepted which is why it withdrew from participation. The Republic of Turkey has decided not to participate in a NATO drill that is going to happen in Greece next month due to “provocation”, security sources said.
Greece has accused Turkey of undermining NATO unity by violating its airspace with fighter jets, prompting an angry Turkish response that blamed Athens for “provocative” violations of its own airspace. Greece’s foreign ministry said it protested to the Turkish ambassador in Athens on Wednesday over a series of overflights in the Aegean Sea, saying they were unlawful and an “unacceptable provocation.”
In a statement responding to Greece, the Turkish foreign ministry said Athens’s comments did not reflect reality, Greece was instigating tensions, and the Turkish Air Force responded to the “provocations” in accordance with engagement rules.
“Greek Air Force has carried out provocative flights near our coasts on April 26-28, and have repeatedly violated our airspace over Datca, Dalaman, and Didim,” it said, referring to resort towns on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.
The neighbors are still at odds over a host of issues, such as competing claims over their respective continental shelves in the Mediterranean, maritime rights, and airspace.
Ankara repeated its call to hold bilateral talks on all the issues of contention with Greece on Thursday, including over airspace. At the weekend, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Greece and Cyprus were the only Western countries critical of Turkey’s stance on sanctions against Russia, saying Athens was concerned Russian tourists would opt to holiday in Turkey because of this.
It is a NATO initiative that seeks to promote solidarity between allied Air Forces, held annually in different countries. Since 1962 Tiger Meets evolved into a first-class military exercise where the participants fly combined missions encompassing the entire spectrum of military operations.
Alongside low flying emphasis is placed on air to air refueling, air combat, the use of weapon ranges, etc.
The exchange of experiences between aircrews is not to be underestimated.
For countries that can not afford to participate in large `flag exercises` in North America, ‘Tiger Meet’ is one of the few multinational exercises available. In view of the changing world security situation, participation is becoming ever more important.
As Reported by the Media Team of the Youth Diplomacy Forum