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NATO Takes No Sides In Incirlik Dispute: Alliance Chief

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Issue of German troops at Turkish base is bilateral matter between Ankara and Berlin, says Jens Stoltenberg

The row over the German troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik Air Base concerns Ankara and Berlin, not NATO itself, said the alliance’s chief on Thursday.

“It has no effect on NATO activities,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told journalists ahead of a European Union defense meeting in Brussels.

“The dispute is a bilateral issue between Turkey and Germany,” he added.

A decision by Turkey to not allow German lawmakers to visit German troops stationed at the base in southern Turkey has angered Berlin, with German leaders saying they could redeploy the troops elsewhere.

Asked about the controversy over the U.S. president allegedly revealing sensitive intelligence to Russian officials last week, Stoltenberg said, “I trust all allies enough, and I'm absolutely certain that they are able to share and handle this information in a good way.”

On NATO’s official involvement in the international coalition fighting Daesh in Syria, he said, “There is no decision yet. What is important for me is that NATO supports the coalition with its Airborne Warning and Control System alongside training it provides.”

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