Turkey court rejects appeal to free Greek soldiers

The court in northwestern Turkey's Edirne province rules for the continuation of custody of 2 Greek soldiers, report says
Monday, 05 March 2018 18:28

A Turkish court on Monday rejected a request for the release of two Greek soldiers arrested last week for illegally entering the country, local media reported.

Lt. Aggelos Mitretodis and Sgt. Dimitros Kouklatzis were remanded in custody on March 2 after they "inadvertently" crossed the border in northwestern Turkey.

Turkish media initially reported that the two men were arrested for "attempted military espionage", but Greek authorities denied it.

The lawyers of the soldiers had filed an appeal to the First Penal Court of Peace in Edirne, objecting to their custody and demanded their release, the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media, said.

The court rejected the appeal and ruled for the continuation of their custody, noting the soldiers did not have permanent residence and should await the result of examination of digital data obtained from them.

The soldiers told prosecutors last week that they had erroneously entered through a border crossing after "following footprints in the snow in an attempt to stop migrant smuggling", local media said.