Brussels, 8 November 20 13
Dear Mr. Secretary General,
Thanks to Your able leadership and the solidarity demonstrated by the Allies, the Council, in response to our request dated 21 November 2012, had agreed at its meeting of 4 December 2012 at the level of Ministers of Foreign Affairs to augment Turkey's air defense capabilities within the framework of the NATO Integrated Air Defense System (NATINADS) to preserve, protect and enhance the ability to defend the population and territory of my country. Furthermore, the Council had decided to regularly assess the implementation of its decision of 4 December 2012.
We welcome and continue to appreciate the deployment of Patriot missile batteries by Germany, the Netherlands and the United States in line with the Council decision, concretely demonstrating Alliance solidarity and resolve.
In view of the continuing instability along NATO's south-eastern border, the rationale for the continuation of the augmentation of Turkey's air defence capabilities still remain valid. Indeed, SACEUR's last report dated 27 September 2013 (P0(2013)0469) regarding NATO Support to Turkey-Patriot Deployment confirms that "the overall assessment of risks and threat to Turkey remains unchanged. The risk to Turkey posed by Syria's ballistic missile capability remains credible". The report also refers to the use of chemical weapons on 21 August 2013 and concludes that "the situation in Syria remains unstable".
On this basis, we request the continuation of the existing augmentation of Turkey's air defence capabilities by maintaining the deployment of Patriot batteries as well as the affiliated personnel, in line with our previous request of 21 November 2012 and the Council decision of 4 December 2012. In this context, the deployment will continue to be defensive only; it will in no way support a No Fly Zone or any offensive operation, and Turkey will continue to provide Host Nation Support as specified in the Implementing Agreement signed between SHAPE and Turkey on 12 January 2013.
The continuation of the deployment would reaffirm the determination of NATO to deter threats and defend Turkey, reflecting and confirming once again the Alliance solidarity.
I am sending a copy of this letter to the Allied Permanent Representatives, Chairman of the Military Committee and SACEUR.
H.E. Anders Fogh Rasmussen
NATO Secretary General
(Defensie weblog, 12 November 2013)