Wednesday, October 16, 2019
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Turkey asserts ‘right’ to close key base for coalition

Turkey said Thursday it had the right to close a key air base used by the US-led coalition to strike jihadists in Syria, as tensions mount between NATO allies Ankara and Washington.

Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said Ankara had the right to close Incirlik air base in Adana province, southern Turkey as part of its sovereign right.

"We always have in our hands the right to say 'we will close it' but as I said, the conditions will be assessed," Kalin told 24 TV channel.

But he added that Turkish authorities were not conducting any urgent assessments to decide whether to close the base to coalition planes.

Turkey is part of the US-led coalition against the Islamic State group (IS) in Syria and lets Western war planes use Incirlik as a base for air raids.

Kalin's comments came after Turkish ministers hit back at the United States over what they perceive as a lack of support for its own intervention in northern Syria and questioned Washington's presence at the base.

Source: National News Agency