NATO says it consistently reviews security situation around Turkey; will take decisions accordingly (exclusive)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Oct. 16
By Anakhanum Khidayatova - Trend:
NATO is consistently reviewing the security situation around Turkey and will take decisions accordingly, an official of the Alliance exclusively told Trend Oct. 16.
Asked about how the withdrawal of Patriot systems from Turkey might affect that country's security, the Alliance's official said the augmentation of Turkey's air defence capabilities is renewed on an annual basis.
"The current mandate [over Patriot systems] runs until the end of the year," the official added.
The Alliance's official also quoted the NATO secretary general's remarks, who stated this month, "We are in constant dialogue with Turkey addressing all the challenges they are facing."
However, the interviewee refused to elaborate on the ongoing internal discussions between NATO and Turkey.
The Patriot missile defense systems were deployed in Turkey upon a request of Ankara back in 2012 to protect the country from a possible missile attack from Syria.
However, some regions of Turkey were still subjected to missile attacks of radical groups in Syria.
Turkey's borders with Syria have become more vulnerable after the US and Germany stated that they will withdraw Patriot systems from the country. They explained this decision by that Ankara is allegedly using these systems to fight the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
The US didn't renew the term of the Patriot systems' deployment in Turkey.
Militants from various armed groups operate in Syria today. Among them the terrorist group "Islamic State" (IS) is the most active.
Russia and the US joined forces in the fight against the IS. However, the parties hold differing positions on the settlement of the Syrian conflict.
Moscow, since the beginning of the conflict, has supported the government of Bashar Assad, while the US and Turkey believe that the current Syrian president should resign.