Skepticism in Athens over the very likely acquisition by Libya of armed Turkish drones AKINCI
Ankara continues its provocative and transgressive behavior in the Aegean, despite the fact that at the rhetorical level of officials, at least, the tones have dropped noticeably.
Ankara with an illegal NOTAM, questioning Greek sovereign rights, tied up 5 areas and announced 6 corridors from which it even asks all aircraft to keep a distance, as a result of which it essentially cuts the Aegean in two, “isolating” the islands of the East Aegean, for search and rescue and environmental protection exercises from yesterday until November 22!
Turkish air activity in the Aegean was also intense as shortly before 12 noon on Tuesday, an unmanned aircraft flew over the islet of Mavra west of Leros.
Turkey by midday also sent 6 fighters divided into three pairs that entered from south and north in the Athens FIR in an attempt to test the Greek reactions.
Which in particular one pair took off from Dalaman and went south and another after taking off from Eskişehir, flew south into the Nicosia FIR, was refueled there by a flying tanker and then turned west entering the Athens FIR.
Just as the Hellenic Air Force was taking off fighters to intercept these two pairs, the Turkish Air Force took off another pair that entered the Athens FIR north of Samothraki. He sat there for just two minutes and left before the Greek fighters arrived in the area. An indication, according to military sources who spoke to Pentapostagma, that the Turks were testing the reactions of the Greek Air Force today.
In total, the Turkish Air Force took off and sent 14 F-16 fighters, 4 drones and a CN235 maritime cooperation and intelligence gathering aircraft to the Aegean Sea.
In three cases, two of which were of the pairs that entered the Athens FIR east of Rhodes, the intercepts turned into dogfights as the Turkish pilots disobeyed the instructions of the Greek pilots.
In the Turkish media, with the acquisition of Rafale and F-16 Vipers from Greece, the concern about its imminent acquisition of air superiority is now on the lips of all analysts in the neighboring country. What Hurriyet columnist Sendat Erkin said while speaking to HaberTurkTV is typical
“They will also start the F-35 program with Greece, while they have excluded Turkey. We are talking about 5th generation aircraft. In the event that the US delivers these 5th generation aircraft and will not give them to Turkey, the experts I have spoken to tell me that if this situation continues and Turkey does not manage to make the national fighter, which will be delayed, then in the middle of this decade in 2026 or 2027 the balance of power in the ethers may be in favor of Greece, which will affect Turkey’s deterrent power.”
In Athens, the Naval General Staff released a video of the placement of the first piece of the first Belharra frigate in the shipbuilding tank, which marks the start of assembly of the ship, thus sending another resounding message of deterrence
At the diplomatic level, the State Department referred in a statement to the telephone conversation that Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken following an American initiative, stressing among other things: “The Minister and Prime Minister Mitsotakis discussed the efforts to support the security of Ukraine in through Russia’s unjustified and unprovoked war and the importance of promoting stability in the Eastern Mediterranean.”
In Athens, staffs are considering the ramifications of the possible acquisition by the Libyan government in Tripoli of armed Turkish AKINCI drones