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Turkish students say no to NATO Patriot missiles on Syria border

Turkish students say no to NATO Patriot missiles on Syria border

Press TV (how to watch Press TV-click to read frequencies) 

Turkish students have taken to the streets of Ankara to protest against the plan to deploy advanced surface-to-air Patriot missiles near the Syrian border.

The demonstrators burned a NATO flag and chanted slogans denouncing the United States and Germany on Friday.

Earlier in the day, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that “six [Patriot missile] batteries will be deployed in Gaziantep, Kahramanmaras, and Adana” in southern Turkey.

NATO recently announced a plan to deploy six batteries to “protect Turkey” from potential Syrian missile strikes.

The US and Germany will provide two Patriot batteries and 400 troops each to man the missiles. The Netherlands will also dispatch 360 troops and the other two batteries.

Some of the troops have already arrived in Turkey, but the missiles will be deployed and fully functional by the end of next month.

According to a NATO official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the Western alliance’s regulations do not allow him to speak on the record, each Patriot battery has an average of 12 missile launchers.

On November 21, Turkey formally asked its NATO partners to deploy the Patriot missiles to defend its border with Syria.

On December 4, NATO agreed to send Patriot missiles to Turkey.

“To the Turkish people we say: We are determined to defend you and your territory. To anyone who would want to attack Turkey we say: Don’t even think about it,” NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said after the Western alliance made the decision in Brussels.

Russia says the threats facing Ankara have been exaggerated to justify NATO’s deployment of advanced Patriot missiles in Turkey along the Syrian border.

Moscow also says that the deployment of Patriot missiles in Turkey would create “the risk that these arms will be used.”

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100s hold demo in Ankara to protest crackdown on students

Press TV

Hundreds of people have taken to the streets of Ankara to protest against the government’s crackdown on university students.

The demonstration was held outside the Turkish prime minister’s office in Ankara on Friday, the English-language newspaper The Daily Star reported.

The protesters chanted slogan against Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and called on the government to release 12 students who were detained during a demonstration against Erdogan’s visit to the Middle East Technical University (METU) in the capital on Tuesday.

Police also injured 50 students during the protest earlier this week.

“Today METU has become a symbol of a repressive environment, an authoritarian regime,” said Aykan Erdemir, a lawmaker from the country’s main opposition party, the Republican People’s Party (CHP).

Classes were cancelled at the university on Thursday in protest at the police crackdown and the arrests at the university campus.

On the same day, Amnesty International called on the Turkish government to launch a “prompt, thorough and impartial investigation into the… use of excessive force against” the students.

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