No retreat of eastern troops to west: Defense officials
ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Reports on April 25 said that some of the troops near the Iraqi border at the Şırnak province were being deployed to western provinces. DHA photoTurkey’s Defense Minister and Land Forces Commander have both denied April 25 reports suggesting that Turkish troops and military vehicles in the southeast were retreating to the west and claiming that the move was part of the ongoing peace process.
“There is nothing such as [retreat to the west]. The [armed forces] are doing what is needed for the security of the country in its 780,000 square kilometers. They would not create any vulnerability,” Defense Minister İsmet Yıldız said.
Earlier reports said that some of the troops near the Iraqi border at the Şırnak province were being deployed to western provinces.
For his part, Land Forces Commander Gen. Hayri Kıvrıkoğlu said that the moves were part of the military maneuvers. “There is not such a thing as retreat. There is an organization for the summer. And this is very normal,” Kıvrıkoğlu said. “We continue in our duty according to the directives given by the government and the authorities accorded by the laws. All our troops are following their duties. Don’t make such a significance of this,” he added.