Hulusi Akar

Turkish defense chief meets British, French counterparts

Turkey's Defense Minister Hulusi Akar had separate meetings with his British and French counterparts in Brussels on Feb. 13.

Akar visited NATO headquarters on the second day of NATO defense ministers meeting.

He met with U.K. Defense Secretary Ben Wallace before attending a session on defense, deterrence and burden-sharing.

Turkish defense chief holds talks at NATO amid Idlib tensions

Scores of Syrian regime elements were "neutralized" on Feb. 12 in Syria's northwestern province of Idlib, the Turkish Defense Ministry has said.

"According to information conveyed by several sources in Idlib region, it has been learned that 55 regime elements were neutralized today," said the statement.

Turkish, US defense chiefs discuss Syria, Iraq

Turkish and U.S. defense ministers discussed on Feb. 12 the situation in Syria and Iraq on the sidelines of NATO defense ministers meeting in Brussels.

Turkey's defense chief Hulusi Akar and his U.S. counterpart Mark Esper exchanged views on security and defense issues regarding Syria and Iraq, including the situation in Idlib.

Panagiotopoulos denies Erdogan’s claim that Athens promised not to approach Imia

Defence Minister Nikos Papagiotopoulos denied the public statement of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that Athens agreed with Ankara not to approach the Imia islets on the anniversary of the 1996 dispute over their sovereignty brought the two countries to the brink of war.

Erdogan's remark triggered a political backlash in Athens.

Minister says channels of dialogue to Turkey open

Deputy Defense Minister Alkiviadis Stefanis said on Thursday that Greece is maintaining dialogue with Turkey but that the country's armed forces are on standby.

"Diplomacy is the first choice," he told Skai radio. "We have open channels of communication but the armed forces are ready to do what is necessary in coordination with the Foreign Ministry," he added.

Defense minister denies Erdogan's phone talk claims on Imia

Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos rejected on Thursday claims by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that he sent a message to Greece through Defense Minister Hulusi Akar not to make any "move" over the eastern Aegean islets of Imia, for which the two countries were brought to the brink of war twenty-four years ago.