Turkey blocks German visit to own soldiers on air base

Source: The Local

German parliamentary state secretary to the defence ministry, Ralf Brauksiepe, was supposed to visit the Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey, which is home to US, Turkish and German reconnaissance jets, according to Spiegel and Bild.

Brauksiepe had wanted to visit the base in the middle of July, along with other Bundestag representatives, to learn more about the German reconnaissance work in the fight against terror group Isis and was also supposed to visit stations in northern Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar, Spiegel wrote.

But now the trip will take place without the stop in Turkey.

Spiegel reports that German Lieutenant General Dieter Warnecke said behind closed doors that the reason for the ban was ongoing tensions between the Bundesrepublik and Turkey after the German parliament (Bundestag) passed a resolution recognizing the Armenian genocide.

Bild also reported that a representative of the German Defence Ministry said the resolution was the reason for the ban.

The tabloid wrote that the defence ministry had been told by the Turkish foreign ministry that only “technical and military personnel” could visit the base, not parliamentary members.

Germany is also planning with Turkey to expand the facilities on the base for its own forces there.

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