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Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Germany says won’t withdraw Patriots from Turkey

Patriot systemThe German government has said that there is no discussion of an early withdrawal of the German Patriot anti-aircraft missile defense batteries stationed in Turkey, as the German troops deployed in Turkey as part of a NATO mission to defend its border with Syria are related to the threat posed by the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, rather than recent developments related to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

“We are not planning any withdrawal or early termination of the Patriots deployed in southern Turkey,” Ingo Gerhaltz, a spokesperson for the German defense minister, told Today's Zaman on Monday, adding that the German Patriot missiles will remain in Turkey until the scheduled termination date in January of the upcoming year.

According to Gerhaltz, the recent threat posed by ISIL and the PKK are not a reason for withdrawal, as “the Patriots are in Turkey because of the threat maintained by the Assad regime.”

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