Germany mulls relocating troops after Incirlik row

Amid recent tensions, Ankara turns down request by German lawmakers to visit troops in Incirlik Air Base, southern Turkey

Germany mulls relocating troops after Incirlik row

World Bulletin / News Desk

Germany’s government signaled on Monday that its troops stationed in Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey could be relocated to another country amid recent disagreements with Ankara.

Turkey turned down a request by German lawmakers to visit their troops in Incirlik this week, Germany’s foreign ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer told a news conference in Berlin.

He added the German government was now moving towards considering alternatives, after growing disagreements with Ankara over the strategic facility.

"We will continue our efforts to ensure that German lawmakers can visit Incirlik, but if Turkey's position would remain the same, then we will enter into a situation where we have to consider other solutions," Schaefer said.

Diplomatic sources in Ankara confirmed that the German parliamentarians’ request was not approved by Turkey, as such a visit was considered to be “inappropriate in the current situation”.

Schaefer said the Turkish side apparently wanted to convey its uneasiness over recent decisions by the German immigration authorities to grant asylum to several Turkish ex-soldiers suspected of involvement in the defeated July 15, 2016 coup attempt.

“The message of the Turkish side was so clear that it can’t be misunderstood,” Schaefer said, commenting on German ambassador Martin Erdmann’s meeting with Turkish counterparts in Ankara over the weekend to discuss issues related to Incirlik.

Schaefer underlined that the German armed forces were mandated by parliament for its missions abroad and argued that lawmakers should have the opportunity to visit troops overseas.

Last Mod: 15 Mayıs 2017, 17:28
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