Withdrawal of German troops from Incirlik to affect Turkey-NATO relations - expert on Turkish studies
YEREVAN, JUNE 22, ARMENPRESS. The withdrawal of German troops and arms from Turkey’s Incirlik air base will negatively affect Turkey-NATO relations, expert on Turkish studies Levon Hovsepyan told Armenpress.
The sides didn’t come to an agreement which forced Germany to withdraw troops from Incirlik air base.
“Turkey was always trying to use Incirlik as a play card in the relations with the US and other members states of NATO. In terms of maneuvering, Incirlik was a key play card for Turkey. The Incirclik factor was also important for Germany, but in any case it made a decision to withdraw troops from the base. Germany has an alternative, and the replacing country will be Jordan in near future. By this Germany showed to Turkey that this play card no longer works”, the expert said.
Although Incirlik air base is an air base of Turkish sovereignty and is not under NATO’s jurisdiction, Levon Hovsepyan thinks that from political perspective this process fits within the frames of NATO-Turkey cooperation. Germany is one of the key actors of NATO and its step can be unprecedented for other NATO member states.
“It is obvious that there are many serious problems in the context of US-Turkey, Turkey-NATO relations.Germany’s such steps will politically affect not only in the bilateral relations format, but also in NATO context”, the expert on Turkish studies said.
The German parliament passed a bill on withdrawing their troops from the Incirlik base in Turkey. According to Deutsche Welle, 461 of 569 lawmakers voted in favor of removing their troops, while 85 voted against and 23 abstained.
Hereby, for the first time in history the German Armed Forces will withdraw their troops from one NATO member country and move them to another base, in a non-NATO member country.
The 260 troops, as well as military equipment, will be transported to Jordan by September.