The US military will not reduce its presence at Turkey’s Incirlik air base, spokesman for the US European Command said.
The Command’s statement circulated in Turkish media called the rumours of “reduced operations” at the air base “just a speculation” and confirmed that the US military activities at Incirlik continue as usual.
Previously it was reported that the US military operations at Incirlik had been substantially reduced and that “permanent cutbacks” had being considered due to tensions between Washington and Ankara.
The two NATO allies are currently at odds with each other due to the Turkish Olive Branch operation seeking to capture the Kurdish-dominated region of Afrin in Aleppo province. Since late January, Turkish and Free Syrian Army factions have been attacking Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), a core element of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the main US ally on the ground in Syria.
The Turkish offensive forced YPG units to halt operation against the remnants of ISIS in eastern Deir Ezzor province and relocate to Afrin, undermining the US plans to establish full control over eastern Syria.