Turkey turns down Israel's request to use Turkish airspace

09:13, June 30, 2010      

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Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Burak Ozugergin on Tuesday verified that Turkey had turned down a request by Israel to use Turkish airspace.

"Lately, Israel asked Turkey to allow a cargo plane to use its airspace. Turkey turned down the request. On the other hand, Israel has been continuing to use Turkish airspace for civilian flights," Ozugergin was quoted as saying by Anatolia news agency at a press briefing.

Ozugergin said, "Civilian flights continue unless they are barred. With regard to military flights, the normal procedure is that for each flight, countries, must ask for permission to use Turkish airspace. It is evaluated on a case-by-case basis."

"It is evident that this is a consequence of the indignation stemming from the military attack on the flotilla carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza. Turkey wants Israel to apologize, pay compensation to families of the victims and to lift blockage on Gaza. We also want establishment of an independent commission to investigate the incident," he said.

"We said earlier that we will take some precautions till our requests are met. They have already known them. And their public opinion will see those precautions one after another," he said.

Ozugergin said, "three ships from the flotilla including the Blue Marmara have still been kept in Israel. Turkey requested Israel to return them 10 days ago. The UN Security Council also referred to the issue in its statement. Now, we expect Israel to make a decision."

Source: Xinhua


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