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Turkey may close Incirlik, Kurecik bases 'if necessary'

Turkey may close Incirlik, Kurecik bases 'if necessary'
Turkish president says U.S. Senate's resolution on Armenian allegations over events of 1915 'completely political'

By Erdogan Cagatay Zontur

ANKARA (AA) - The Turkish president on Sunday said Ankara may close two bases in Turkey where U.S. soldiers are stationed "if necessary".

"When necessary, we will discuss with all our delegations, and if necessary, we may close Incirlik [air base in southern Adana province] and Kurecik [radar station in eastern Malatya province]," Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a televised interview.

Speaking about a resolution passed in the U.S. Senate on Armenian allegations over the events of 1915, Erdogan said the bill was "completely political", adding: "It is very important for both sides that the U.S. does not take irreparable steps in our relations."

"We regret that the polarization in U.S. domestic politics has had negative consequences for us and that some groups abuse developments about our country for their own interests in order to weaken [President Donald] Trump," Erdogan added.

On Thursday, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a resolution recognizing Armenian claims on the events that transpired in 1915.

Turkey's position on the events of 1915 is that the deaths of Armenians in eastern Anatolia took place when some sided with invading Russians and revolted against Ottoman forces. A subsequent relocation of Armenians resulted in numerous casualties.

Turkey objects to the presentation of the incidents as "genocide" but describes the events as a tragedy in which both sides suffered casualties.

Ankara has repeatedly proposed the creation of a joint commission of historians from Turkey and Armenia plus international experts to examine the issue.

source: News Feed
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