Defence minister: Anti-missile defence system in Turkey not threat
Azerbaijan, Baku, Dec. 7 / Trend A. Tagiyeva /
The new anti-missile defence system which will be located on the Kurecik base near the Turkish town of Malatya is not directed against any specific country, Turkish Defence Minister Ismet Yilmaz was quoted by CNN Turk as saying.
"The radar of the anti-missile system is a system of defence, rather than attack," he said. "It cannot be directed against anyone."
Minister stressed that this radar will be used by NATO, but that Turkish officers will oversee it. The decision to deploy elements of the anti-missile system in Turkey was made at last year's NATO summit in Lisbon. Turkey initially supported the initiative.
The agreement to place an anti-missile radar system at the Kurecik military base was signed by the U.S. Ambassador to Turkey Francis Rikardone and the adviser to Turkish Foreign Ministry Firudin Sinirlioglu in September.
Officially Tehran has repeatedly expressed its concern to Ankara over this decision. "This action will benefit Israel and other foreign forces in the region," Iranian Foreign Ministry official representative Ramin Mehmanparast said.