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HAF Mirage 2000-5 goes down near Skyros

A Greek Mirage 2000-5 fighter jet has gone down 9 miles northeast of the island of Skyros in the Aegean Sea. 

A search and rescue operation is underway with helicopters and sea vessels. According to initial reports, the jet was part of a squadron intercepting Turkish jets that had violated Greek national airspace by infringing the Athens FIR. The pilot of the aircraft is missing.

The Hellenic Airforce General Staff released a press statement:On Thursday 12 April 2018 at 12:15, there an M2000-5 aircraft went missing, nine (9) nautical miles north-east of Skyros Island. Investigations are being carried out to locate it.

The mayor of the island, Miltiadis Chatzigiannakis, speaking to protothema.gr said: “So far we know that an aircraft of our airforce has gone missing, which has probably fallen and at the moment we have launched rescue crews to locate our pilot. There is a serious concern on the island, since we all want our pilot to be safe. We know that the aircraft was part of an operation to intercept Turkish jets but the incident is not related to the operation.”

The Turkish media are covering the incident as breaking news, presenting it without referring to the fact that the aircraft was part of a formation intercepting Turkish aircraft that had violated Greek airspace.