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Ankara scraps migrant readmission protocol with Greece over asylum case

Repeated decisions by Greece's judicial to free eight Turkish servicemen who've requested political asylum since July 16, 2016 generated the first major reaction by Turkey, with the country's foreign minister on Thursday saying Ankara has suspended its bilateral migrant readmission deal.

 “We have a migrant deal with the EU. It is being implemented. We have a bilateral readmission deal with Greece. We have now suspended this agreement. The process is not fully over but our works towards Greece will continue,” Hurriet has Çavuşoğlu telling reporters in Antalya, in his election district.

“Greece is under immense pressure from the west, particularly on its judiciary,” the Turkish FM opined.

In a related development, Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos briefed NATO counterparts the same day over what he called "continuing Turkish provocations" and the continued incarceration of two Greek servicemen that allegedly strayed into the neighboring country on March 1.

Speaking at a NATO defense ministers' summit, Kammenos reminded that the two Greek soldiers continue to be "illegally held" for the 99th day.

He also called on his Turkish counterpart, Nurettin Canikli, to explain a comment by his government's vice-president, Bekir Bozdag, who said Turkey would "wrap up" eight Turkish servicemen that have requested political asylum in Greece and return them to Turkish justice.