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NATO: We will continue to support Turkey air defences in Idlib

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg makes a speech as he attends the 56th Munich Security Conference at Bayerischer Hof Hotel in Munich, Germany on February 15, 2020 [Abdulhamid Hoşbaş / Anadolu Agency]
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in Munich, Germany on 15 February 2020 [Abdulhamid Hoşbaş / Anadolu Agency]

NATO members held an emergency meeting today at the request of Turkey following the killing of 33 Turkish soldiers in north-east Syria.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said in a statement after the meeting that the talks were held under Article 4 of NATO's founding treaty, which allows any ally to request consultations if it feels its territorial integrity, political independence or security is threatened.

"NATO continues to support Turkey with a range of measures, including by augmenting its air defences, which helps Turkey against the threat of missile attacks from Syria," Stoltenberg added.

"Allies offer their deepest condolences for the death of Turkish soldiers in last night's bombing near Idlib."

READ: Turkey kills over 300 Syria regime troops in retaliation to attack

"Today's meeting is a sign of solidarity with Turkey."

On Thursday, after 33 Turkish soldiers were killed by Russian supported Syrian regime forces, Turkey opened its southwestern border with Syria to allow refugees fleeing the pro-government forces' assault free passage to Europe. The decision came after a security meeting on Idlib chaired by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres today called for an immediate ceasefire in Syria, his official spokesman said in a statement.

"He also urged international community to provide stronger support to Turkey for Syrian refugees," he said.

Europe & RussiaInternational OrganisationsMiddle EastNATONewsSyriaTurkey
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