U.S. to withdraw patriots from Turkey

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Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton B. Carter speaks to troops as he arrives at a Turkish army base at Gaziantep, Turkey, Feb. 4, 2013. File photo

ARA News

Cizre, Turkey – The United States is preparing to withdraw its Patriot missile system deployed on the Turkish borderline with Syria in October, officials said on Sunday. 

U.S. and Turkey issued a statement saying that the air-defense units “could be returned to Turkey within a week if the need arises”.

“U.S. navy ships would be present in the Mediterranean to support Turkey’s defense,” the statement added.

In 2013, the U.S. and allies deployed Patriot missile systems in the region to protect NATO ally Turkey after shells fired from Syria landed in the country. 

The U.S. decision comes one day after Germany declared its intention to end its mission in Turkey by the beginning of 2016. 

Reporting by: Eyaz Ciziri

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