US troops arrive in Turkey to prepare deployment of Patriot missiles

U.S. soldiers arrived in the southeastern province of Gaziantep

From PressTV/IranTurkish media reported on Friday that the 27-member team of US military forces had arrived in the southeastern city of Gaziantep. The team will also inspect the site of the batteries.

On December 21, 2012, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the Patriot missile batteries will be installed near the southeastern cities of Adana, Gaziantep and Kahramanmaras. . . . .

All the six Patriot batteries are scheduled to be operational near the Turkey-Syria border by the end of January.   (photo: İlkay Göçmen/Today’s Zaman)

UPDATE From EUCOM:  U.S. personnel and equipment began arriving at Incirlik Air Base today to support NATO’s Patriot battery deployment to Turkey.

Approximately 400 U.S. personnel and equipment from the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Air Defense Artillery (3-2 ADA) based at Fort Sill, Okla., will continue to flow into Turkey over the next several days by U.S. military airlift.  The troops will man two Patriot batteries supporting NATO’s mission there. Additional equipment will be moved by sea, arriving later this month.

From John Vandiver and Matt Millham, Stars and Stripes:  An advance team of roughly 50 U.S. troops, mostly from the headquarters of U.S. Army Europe and the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, arrived Thursday to prep for the arrival of air defense forces, U.S. Army Maj. Brian Carlin said by phone from Turkey.

“Moving personnel, equipment, supplies — it’s a lot of logistics. So we’ve got a logistics team here to do that,” Carlin said. . . .

A team of about two dozen U.S. troops traveled Thursday to the Turkish city of Gaziantep, across the border from the embattled Syrian city of Aleppo, to survey the area where the U.S. batteries will be deployed, Carlin said.

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