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Greece refuses to extradite 2 more Turkish soldiers allegedly involved in putsch

A Turkish officer covers his face as he is escorted by a Greek police officer to the courthouse of Alexandroupoli on July 21, 2016, during the trial of eight Turkish military officers who fled to Greece by helicopter after last week's failed coup attempt. Eight Turkish military officers who fled to Greece after last week's failed coup went on trial on July 21 for illegal entry in a case that threatens to strain ties between the NATO allies. The eight are being tried in the northern city of Alexandroupoli, where they arrived by military helicopter on Saturday after sending a distress signal to authorities. / AFP PHOTO / SAKIS MITROLIDIS

A Greek appeals court on Thursday overturned a decision to extradite the last two of eight Turkish soldiers who fled to Greece in the aftermath of a failed coup on July 15.

The decision means that only three soldiers will be extradited to Turkey.

On Tuesday a Greek court ruled to extradite three soldiers who were allegedly involved in the failed coup attempt in Turkey.

The court ruled that the three pilots should be returned to Turkey to stand trial for three of the four crimes they are accused of by Turkey, but not for attempting to kill President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, lawyer Stavroula Tomara told Reuters.

The pilots have appealed the ruling at the country’s top court, she added.

Tuesday’s decision followed the opposite decision by a Greek court on Monday, which denied Turkey’s request for the extradition of three soldiers who allegedly took part in the coup attempt.

The soldiers reportedly said they would be subject to the death penalty in Turkey if they were extradited since President Erdoğan has been planning to reinstate capital punishment.

The soldiers deny any part in the putsch as alleged by Turkey.

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