Nato to discuss Syrian air attack
Jun 25 2012
Nato ambassadors will meet this week to discuss how to respond to Syria's downing of a Turkish jet in what Turkey insists was international airspace.
The incident has increased regional tensions caused by the conflict in Syria, where reports said nearly 40 people died in new clashes between rebels and regime forces.
The jet's wreckage was found in the Mediterranean at a depth of 4,265ft, Turkish state media said. The two pilots remain unaccounted for.
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said the jet was on a training flight to test Turkey's radar capabilities, not spying on Syria. He said the plane mistakenly strayed into Syrian airspace on Friday, but was quickly warned to leave by Turkish authorities and was a mile inside international airspace when it was shot down off the coast of Latakia.
Syria insisted that the shooting was "not an attack" and that the aircraft had violated its airspace. But Turkish authorities said Syria didn't warn the Turkish plane nor send its own jets to confront it. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was expected to make a statement on Tuesday and might announce retaliatory steps.
"No one should dare to test Turkey's capabilities," Mr Davutoglu said.
Meantime, at the request of Turkey, Nato's governing body will meet on Tuesday to discuss the incident, said Oana Lungescu, a Nato spokeswoman. The consultations were called under article 4 of Nato's founding Washington Treaty.
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