'Turkey asked Israel for information'

September 9, 2007 11:39

Muallem to visit Ankara to "deliver message" on fuel tanks "dropped by IAF planes on Turkish border."

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'Turkey asked Israel for information'

fuel tank 224.88. (photo credit: Courtesy www.huriyett.com)

Turkey's Foreign Ministry has requested information from Israel over fuel tanks found near its border with Syria that allegedly were dropped by IAF aircraft, a ministry official said Sunday. The request follows allegations by Syria on Thursday that Israeli aircraft entered its airspace and dropped "munitions." Israel has not commented on the incident. A Turkish Foreign Ministry official said Turkey had requested information from Israel on the fuel tanks on Saturday, but had not yet received a response. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make press statements. Over the weekend, Turkish TV broadcast pictures of what it said were the Israeli fuel tanks found in the provinces of Hatay and Gaziantep, near the Syrian border, though they did not have any national markings. If accurate, the report would be the first concrete evidence that IAF warplanes were in the area. The incident has raised questions about why Israel would want to heighten tensions with its enemy to the North. Experts have speculated Israel might have been seeking information about long-range missiles pointed at Israel, testing Syrian air defense, or testing out a possible air route to its archenemy Iran. Meanwhile, the London daily Al-Hayat reported that Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem was expected to visit Ankara on Sunday afternoon to deliver a message on behalf of President Bashar Assad regarding the fuel tanks which were reportedly dropped. Muallem was scheduled to meet with European Union ambassadors in Damascus to brief them on what Syria claims was an aerial violation of Israel, the report said.

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