Turkey Suspends All US Operations Against ISIS At Incirlik Airbase, Which Vaults B61 Nuclear Bombs
“Following the failed Turkish coup, U.S. military operations out of Turkey’s giant Incirlik Air Base – critical in the ongoing campaign against ISIS – came to a halt Saturday afternoon as the Turkish military closed the airspace around the base and suspended all US-led operations, mostly targeting the Islamic State.
Some have speculated that the airbase may be held “hostage” by Ankara as a bargaining chip ahead of demands for the extradition of Erdogan’s arch enemy, Fethullah Gulen, currently a resident of the state of Pennsylvania.
…Continue reading @ ZeroHedge
Turkey Cuts Power to Incirlik Air Base, Suspends Military Flights
Power to the huge U.S. airbase at Incirlik in southeastern Turkey was cut off Saturday and flight operations against ISIS were shut down in the aftermath of the failed military coup.
The U.S. military was still seeking a full accounting of all personnel and dependents in Turkey, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said in a statement.
“All indications at this time are that everyone is safe and secure,” he said. “We will continue to take the necessary steps to ensure the safety and security of our service members, our civilians, their families and our facilities.”
Cook said the Turkish government “has closed its airspace to military aircraft and, as a result, air operations at Incirlik Air Base have been halted at this time.”
There was no indication when flights against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, would resume.
Cook said U.S. Central Command was making adjustments with aircraft operating out of other regional bases “to minimize any effects on the campaign.”
In addition, commercial power to the base where about 2,000 mostly Air Force personnel are stationed was cut off but the base was able to function on internal power, he said.
The statement contrasted with the initial reports from defense officials Friday night as the coup was underway. At the time they said Incirlik was not affected and flight operations were continuing.
U.S. European Command, which has responsibility for Turkey, evacuated about 600 of the estimated 700 military families who resided at Incirlik following the terror attacks on the Brussels airport and Metro in March. However, a defense official told Military.com Friday night that about 100 dependents were still in Turkey.
NATO ally Turkey was rocked Friday by clashes between the coup militants and forces loyal to the government of President Recep Tayyin Erdogan that left at least 265 dead and 1,440 wounded, according to Prime Minister Binali Yildirim. At a news conference Saturday in Ankara, the capital, Yildirim called the failed coup “a stain on the history of democracy.”
…Continue reading @ Military.com