Shutting down Incirlik Air Base not on agenda: Turkish FM
Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan. 6
By Orkhan Quluzade – Trend:
Shutting down the Incirlik Air Base in Turkey’s Adana is not on the agenda, Anadolu Agency quoted Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu as saying.
The foreign minister made the remarks after a meeting with Antonio Guterres, new UN secretary general.
The US Air Force and air forces of other countries – Turkey’s allies – are stationed at the Incirlik Air Base under NATO agreements, according to Cavusoglu.
Ankara also allowed other countries involved in the fight against the “Islamic State” (aka IS, ISIL, ISIS or Daesh) terrorist group to use the base, he said.
The foreign minister noted that Ankara actively fights the IS.
“The [US-led] international coalition has not supported Turkey lately in its fight against terrorists,” Cavusoglu said. “If this coalition is designed to combat IS, and Turkey has, for its part, created conditions for the counteraction against terrorists, why isn’t Ankara getting appropriate support from its partners?”
He added that shutting down the air base in Adana is not on the agenda now, but, the countries that use this air base under the pretext of the fight against IS and do virtually nothing, must not be stationed at Incirlik.
Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Veysi Kaynak has earlier said Ankara questions the presence of forces of the coalition at the Incirlik base.
Incirlik Air Base is used by the United States Air Force and the Turkish Air Force. Its activities are regulated by the Defense and Economic Cooperation Agreement.
Planes of a number of the coalition members, that participate in air operations against IS, are also stationed at this air base.
Follow the author on Twitter: @o_quluzade