NATO: Syrian missiles 'could fall into Turkey'

Risk of Syrian missiles hitting Turkey remains as US, Germany reveal plans to end Patriot missile deployments

NATO: Syrian missiles 'could fall into Turkey'

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey still faces the risk of being hit by Syrian missiles, a NATO official said.

The claim follows news that the U.S. and Germany will not renew their deployment of missile defense systems in the country.

In a written statement on Monday, the NATO official said, "While the current threat posed by Syrian missiles to Turkey is assessed as low, a risk remains that missiles launched against opposition forces inside Syria could fall into Turkey."

Germany and the U.S. have recently announced they would pull Patriot missile batteries from the southern part of Turkey - a NATO ally.

Berlin said on Saturday it would end its Patriot contribution by the beginning of 2016 because the threat to Turkey from Syrian ballistic missiles is “low”.

"The decision was taken after the present assessments made by NATO in June 2015, which concluded that the threat against Turkish territories by Syrian ballistic missiles is very low," the German Defense Ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

The U.S. said on Sunday it would not renew its deployment of Patriot air and missile defense units, due to expire in October.

"The German and U.S. Patriot deployments have made an important contribution to helping protect the population of Turkey against ballistic missile threats from Syria," the NATO official said.

The Syrian regime has fired hundreds of ballistic missiles over the last years with some hitting neighboring countries, including Turkey.

Roughly half of Syria’s population has been displaced by the violence, with over four million Syrians now seeking refuge in neighboring countries, especially Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq.

The conflict has left more than 220,000 people dead to date, according to U.N. figures.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 17 Ağustos 2015, 14:17