NATO commander backs Turkey's fight against PKK
Gen. Breedlove stresses 'right to defend' against terrorist groups
NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Gen. Philip Breedlove has voiced support for Turkey’s anti-terror efforts.
"We believe that we all have the right to defend ourselves specifically against terrorism and terrorist groups,” Breedlove said Saturday in Istanbul at a NATO’s Military Committee conference.
"So we stand with our Turkish brothers in this respect,” he said.
Turkey has seen a surge in violence since the PKK terrorist organization resumed its armed campaign at the end of July. More than 100 Turkish security personnel have been martyred in attacks mainly in Turkey’s southeastern provinces.
"This border which Turkey shares, this ungoverned space we talked about in Iraq and Syria, this is clearly a problem for Turkey," Breedlove said.
"It is clearly a problem for the U.S. and Turkey and our bilateral relationship but it is also a problem for NATO."
Breedlove also praised Turkey over a "spectacular” cooperation with the U.S. at the Incirlik Air Base, which Ankara has opened for use in anti-Daesh operations.
NATO officials gathered in Istanbul on Saturday to discuss regional security and challenges, as well as NATO’s current mission in Afghanistan and the Western Balkans, according to a NATO statement.
The Military Committee, NATO’s highest military authority meeting, will continue until Sept 13 in Istanbul.
Last Modified: 2015-09-13 13:34:08
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