ATHENS (UrduPoint News / Sputnik – 31st July, 2020) The Greek Ministry of National Defense has denied recent media reports that Athens concluded an agreement to purchase military drones from a Turkish company, according to a statement.
The story was carried by Turkish media outlets, such as the Daily Sabah newspaper, which cited the CEO of the Istanbul-based Assuva Savunma Sanayi company, who claimed that Athens had signed a preliminary agreement for the purchase of 50 Turkish-made drones.
“The Ministry of National Defense categorically denies the rumors and unconfirmed reports coming from foreign media outlets claiming that the Greek military allegedly intends to purchase Turkish-made unmanned aerial vehicles,” the ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
The ministry added that journalists must fact-check all stories before publishing.
“Information that is being disseminated on the internet, especially on news sites, must be fact-checked before being reproduced domestically. This is a basic rule of journalistic ethics, especially when it concerns sensitive issues related to national defense and security,” the ministry said.
Defense officials said that those suspected of spreading fake news may face criminal charges.
The allegations follow in the wake of rising tensions between Ankara and Athens, following Turkey’s attempts to conduct seismological surveys in the Mediterranean Sea for the purpose of hydrocarbon drilling. Greece has also slammed Turkey’s recent decision to convert Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia into a mosque.