Turkey's Gul agrees to 60,000 U.S. troops
SPECIAL TO WORLD TRIBUNE.COM
Thursday, February 27, 2003
ANKARA Ñ Turkey's government has formally agreed to the deployment
of more than 60,000 U.S. troops.
Turkish officials said the government of Prime Minister Abdullah Gul
completed negotiations with Washington for the arrival and deployment of
U.S. troops and equipment for a war against Iraq. They said the agreement
would be relayed to parliament later on Thursday for a vote.
Under the agreement, officials said, the United States would be allowed
to deploy more than 60,000 troops in Turkey for an unspecified period. The
troops would be accompanied by tanks, armored personnel carriers and
fighter-jets based in up to six military bases in Turkey.
In return, officials said, Turkey would receive a compensation package
worth about $20 billion. The package would include both grants and loan
For more than a week, several U.S. warships have been anchored off the
coast of Turkey. The vessels are transporting tanks and armored personnel
carriers for the U.S. 4th Infantry Division, planned for deployment along
the Iraqi-Turkish border.