Greek parliament president to visit 2 servicemen still held in pre-trial detention in Turkey

Wednesday, 16 May 2018 11:55

Κοινή συνεδρίαση της Διακομματικής Επιτροπής για το Δημογραφικό και της Επιτροπής Κοινωνικών Υποθέσεων της Βουλής με θέμα ημερήσιας διάταξης: "Δημογραφικό και Κοινωνικό Πορτραίτο της Ελλάδας 2016 - 2017: Τάσεις, προκλήσεις και πολιτικές", την Τρίτη 17 ΑΠριλίου 2018. (EUROKINISSI/ΓΙΩΡΓΟΣ ΚΟΝΤΑΡΙΝΗΣ) .

The president of Greece's Parliament, Nikos Voutsis, on Wednesday is expected to visit two Greek servicemen still being held in pre-trial detention in an Edirne prison, a border city in European Turkey.

The visit is significant because it is the first time an elected Greek state official - and not diplomats or private citizens - will visit Lt. Angelos Mitretodis and Sgt. Dimitris Kouklatzis since the pair was arrested for allegedly straying into Turkish territory along a poorly demarcated spot on the Greek-Turkish land frontier on March 1, 2018.

A Greek European Parliament (MEP) deputy, Manolis Kefaloyannis, visited the pair this week as the head of a Euro-parliament delegation visiting Turkey.

The Greek government, political parties, top European officials and even NATO's leadership have demanded the release of the men, who have been held in custody on a vague initial charge of illegally entering a restricted military zone. However, no formal indictment has been handed down, while an ongoing judicial investigation by a first instance prosecutor in Edirne has dragged on without a deadline for completion. As such, no court date has been set, assuming a specific charge or charges is filed.
Voutsis is in Turkey for a Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) summit of member-states' parliament presidents that will take place in Istanbul.

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