Justice minister: Eight Turkish officers to be released in May, when their detention is up

The eight Turkish officers who are detained in Greece will be released within May, as they are gradually reaching the maximum detention of 18 months prior to a trial, Justice Minister Stavros Kontonis told News 247 FM on Monday.

The eight have requested political asylum after a July 2016 coup, which the Turkish government charges they participated in.

Kontonis said that Turkey has not requested their trial in Greece, therefore, “following the expiration of 18 months, which is coming up in May, there is no provision of extending their detention,” he said.

Asked whether he is concerned about their possible abduction, the justice minister said, “I want to be clear: Everyone residing in Greece legally is not in any danger. How this case will develop and what kind of measures will be taken is not a present concern.”

On the issue of whether he believes Turkey is linking the eight with the case of two Greek servicement it’s holding for trespassing at the borders, Kontonis replied, “Since tehre are no explicit statements by the Turkish side, I cannot speculate on such a serious issue. They themselves say there is no linking.”