Turkish army to conduct exercise near Syria

Turkish army to conduct exercise near Syria

ANKARA - Hürriyet Daily News
Turkish army to conduct exercise near Syria

Turkish Armed Forces Photo

The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) is set to stage a 10-day long “planned exercise” in the southern province of Adana. Adana is neighbor to Hatay, a province bordering on Syria.

The Yıldırım-2013 Mobilization Exercise will begin today and end on May 15, according to an announcement posted on the official website of the Turkish General Staff yesterday. Accordingly, the previously planned exercise will be conducted at the Air Forces 10th Tanker Base Command.

Testing army’ mobilization

The exercise will test the army’s mobilization system and the coordination between public institutions and the armed forces in case of any mobilization, the statement said.

Twelve vehicles and 60 stand-by personnel as well as a private transportation company and some elements from public institutions and organizations will take part in the exercise. The 10th Tanker Command also runs the İncirlik Air Base, a Turkish air force installation in Adana.

The Turkish General Staff and the U.S. Air Force signed a joint use agreement for what was then Adana Air Base in December 1954.

Turkey is sheltering more than 300,000 Syrians, most of them in camps along the frontier, and is struggling to keep up with the influx.

Ankara has denied reports that it has banned Syrians from crossing into Turkey, saying it operates an open-door policy but that at times it needs to regulate the flow of refugees.

One Turkish border guard was killed and six others were wounded on May 2 in a clash at the Syrian border with armed men.

The incident was a reminder of the strains on neighboring countries as violence from the civil war in Syria, now into its third year, spilled across borders.