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Turkey, Greece to hold joint military meeting next week: report

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Turkey and Greece agreed on Wednesday to hold a third joint military meeting in the Greek capital of Athens next week as part of confidence-building measures between the two NATO allies, the Kuna news website reported, citing Turkish media.

Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency said the agreement came during a meeting between Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and his Greek counterpart, Nikos Panagiotopoulos, on the sidelines of a meeting of NATO defense ministers in Brussels.

The agency added that the two sides stressed the importance of keeping the channels of dialogue open and avoiding actions that increase tension in the region.

Relations between Greece and Turkey have experienced increased tension, especially after Athens refused to hand over Turkish soldiers fleeing the country following a failed coup in 2016.

The two sides also exchanged accusations that ships and warplanes were engaging in “harassment” in the Aegean Sea, along with the current tension in the eastern Mediterranean with the start of exploration for oil and gas in the region.

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