NATO anounces locations for patriot missile deployment in Turkey
NATO named the three Turkish provinces in which Patriot missile systems from Germany, the Netherlands and the United States will be deployed over the coming weeks, while Iran continues to urge that Patriot deployment will only harm Turkey. "Germany will deploy its batteries in Kahramanmaras, the Netherlands will deploy its batteries in Adana, and the United States will deploy its batteries in Gaziantep," NATO said in a statement December 22. "The deployment, which will take place over the next few weeks, will be defensive only. It will not support a no-fly zone or any offensive operation. Its aim is to deter any threats to Turkey, to defend Turkey's population and territory and to de-escalate the crisis on NATO's south-eastern border," it said. However, Iran’s defense minister was quoted as saying that the installation of Patriot anti-missile batteries would only harm Turkey’s security. Tehran opposes the installation of NATO missiles as Western interference in the region and has said it could lead to a "world war." "The installation of Patriot missiles in Turkey plays no role in establishing Turkey’s security and this harms Turkey itself," Iranian Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said on Dec. 22, according to the Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA).