Turkey and NATO disclose Patriot missile sites
From Seda Sezer, Reuters: Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday Patriot missiles being sent by NATO members to bolster Turkey's defenses against a possible missile attack from Syria will be deployed near the southeastern cities of Adana, Gaziantep and Kahramanmaras. . . .
"We made our application to NATO and they gave us six batteries and they will be deployed in Gaziantep, Kahramanmaras and Adana," Erdogan told broadcaster NTV in a live interview. . . .
While the batteries were expected to be deployed near the Syrian border, Erdogan's comments were the first confirmation of their location. NATO sent a reconnaissance team to Turkey last month to determine the best sites to deploy the batteries.
Adana, Turkey's fourth-largest city, is located around 100 km (60 miles) from the Syrian border. The joint Turkish-American Incirlik Air Base is also just outside the city.
Gaziantep, a city of around 1.5 million people, is further to the east, some 60 km (35 miles) from the Syrian border. Kahramanmaras, to the north of Gaziantep, has around half a million inhabitants and is some 150 km (95 miles) from Syria.
From NATO: The three NATO Allies which have agreed to provide Patriot missiles to augment Turkey’s air defences – Germany, the Netherlands and the United States - have agreed on the locations where the batteries will be deployed.
This was decided jointly with Turkey as the host nation and in close coordination with the Supreme Allied Commander Europe, following a military assessment by the Allies involved and NATO’s Military Authorities. Germany, the Netherlands and the United States have offered to provide two Patriot batteries each. Germany will deploy its batteries to Kahramanmaras, the Netherlands will deploy its batteries to Adana, and the United States will deploy its batteries to Gaziantep.
The deployment, which will take place over the next few weeks, will be defensive only. It will not support a no-fly zone or any offensive operation. Its aim is to deter any threats to Turkey, to defend Turkey’s population and territory and to de-escalate the crisis on NATO’s south-eastern border. (photo: Philadelphia News)