5 January 2013
400 US personnel and equipment would continue to flow into Turkey over next several days by US military airlift.
ANKARA -- US personnel and equipment began arriving at Incirlik Air Base to support NATO's Patriot battery deployment to Turkey, said the US Embassy in Ankara, the Turkish capital.
In a press release, the embassy said approximately 400 US personnel and equipment would continue to flow into Turkey over the next several days by US military airlift.
"The troops will man two Patriot batteries supporting NATO's mission there. Additional equipment will be moved by sea, arriving later this month," the embassy said.
The deployment of six Patriot batteries, including two each from Germany and the Netherlands, is in response to Turkey's request to NATO against possible missile threat from Syria.
"The forces will augment Turkey's air defense capabilities and contribute to the de-escalation of the crisis along the Alliance's border," the embassy said.
"Turkey is an important NATO ally and we welcome the opportunity to support the Turkish government's request in accordance with the NATO standing defense plan," the embassy quoted Navy Vice Adm. Charles Martoglio, US European Command deputy commander, as saying.
The duration of the deployment will be determined by the contributing nations in coordination with Turkey and NATO, the embassy said.