Turkey’s Defence Ministry released a video recorded by one of the Turkish Air Force’s F-16s that were scrambled on 27 August to intercept F-16 jets belonging to Greece. The footage shows the Turkish fighter's targeting interface closely following a Greek jet.
27 Ağustos 2020 tarihinde Girit Adası'ndan kalkarak GKRY'ye doğru giden ve Navtex ilan edilen bölgeye yaklaşan Yunanistan’a ait 6 adet F-16 uçağı, Hava Kuvvetlerimize ait F-16 uçakları tarafından önleme yapılarak bölgeden uzaklaştırılmıştır.https://t.co/yntVao9lgz#MSB #TSK pic.twitter.com/9V46V3Gve7— T.C. Millî Savunma Bakanlığı (@tcsavunma) August 28, 2020
The Turkish F-16s were dispatched after the Greek fighters, which took off from an airbase on Crete, flew towards southern Cyprus and approached the so-called NAVITEX zone. NAVITEX is a system used to help vessels navigate coastal waters and usually covers an area 400 nautical miles (740 kilometres) wide. Ankara has used it, among other things, to send over data about the survey activities of its research vessel that are looking for pockets of offshore energy resources near Cyprus to Greece.
These research activities, which Turkey has promised to follow up with drilling, have become a source of escalating tensions between the two countries. Ankara claims control over certain parts of Cyprus’ offshore waters, which were given to it from the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, and insists it has the right to discover and extract energy resources there. Athens does not recognise these claims and mobilised military forces after Turkey resumed geological survey activities early in August 2020.