Germany and the US have plans to withdraw patriot missile batteries deployed in Turkey.
These had been deployed about three-years-ago as a part of NATO mission to Strengthen Turkey’s air defense against a possible attack from Syria’s Bashar al-Assad regime.
German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen said Saturday that along with other NATO partners, Germany has protected the Turkish people from missile attacks from Syria, but the country is ending the Patriot deployment in January 2016.
Besides, Germany will also withdraw its 260 troops who were deployed to operate the missile batteries.
The government would not extend the Patriot deployment for another year when their yearly term expires in January 2016, German media reported. Further, the nation will withdraw the Patriots and the troops in October, before the scheduled termination of the deployment.
German Patriot missile batteries were deployed in southern Turkey about 100 kilometers north of the border with Syria, along with Patriots from the US and the Netherlands in early 2013, after Turkey requested NATO's help in enhancing its air defense against the Syrian regime.
The Turkish government and the US late Sunday announced jointly that it would withdraw its Patriots in Gaziantep province.
The United States has also informed the Turkish government that the US deployment of Patriot air and missile defense units in Turkey, which expires in October, will not be renewed beyond the end of the current rotation. Other relevant Allies have also been consulted.
The US Patriots have been in Turkey as part of a broader NATO mission since 2013. They will be redeployed to the US for critical modernization upgrades that will ensure the US missile defense force remains capable of countering evolving global threats and protecting Allies and partners, including Turkey.
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