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On 16-17 February 2012, the NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen thanks Turkey for its vital role in the Alliance.
On 18th February 2012, Turkey commemorates its 60th anniversary of NATO membership. To mark this occasion, NATO's Public Diplomacy Division creates a dedicated module in Turkish.
On the occasion of the crisis along NATO’s south-eastern border the NATO Secretary General received a letter in November 2012 from the Turkish government requesting the deployment of Patriot missiles. In this letter, the Turkish government stressed that the deployment would be defensive only, and that it would in no way support a no-fly zone or any offensive operation.
On 4 december 2012, NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs agreed to augment Turkey’s air defence capabilities by deploying Patriot missiles at a meeting in Brussels.
Three NATO Allies agreed to provide Patriot missiles to augment Turkey’s air defences: Germany, the Netherlands and the United States.
On the specific "NATO Support to Turkey" web page you will find a timeline of events leading to NATO’s decision, a map of Patriot Batteries in Turkey, the Fact Sheet : PATRIOT DEPLOYMENT published on 20 February 2013, together with more stories and additional information about this defensive action.
In October 2014, during a visit to Ankara, Jens Stoltenberg, the new NATO Secretary General, mentioned the events close to Turkey’s southern border and added: “ISIL poses a grave threat to the Iraqi people, to the Syrian people, to the wider region, and to NATO nations. So it is important that the whole international community stays united in this long-term effort. I welcome the decisive actions taken by the United States, with many Allies and partners. And I welcome the recent vote in the Turkish Parliament to authorize an even more active role of Turkey in the crisis”. (Source: "NATO Secretary General shows Alliance solidarity in Turkey", 9 Oct 2014)
Between 13 and 14 May 2015, Turkey hosted the NATO Foreign Ministers Meeting in the southern province of Antalya in order to discuss the Alliance’s adaptation in the face of a changed security environment. During this meeting, Ankara offered to assume the responsibility as a framework nation in the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force for 2021. Turkey also announced that it would contribute to the new NATO trust fund for Defence Capacity Building, which was set up by the United Kingdom.
On 28 July 2015, the North Atlantic Council met at Turkey’s request and discussed the threats against Turkey.The NAC hold consultations under Article 4 of the Washington Treaty, which states that “the parties will consult whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence, or security of any of the parties is threatened.” Following the meeting, the NAC stated that NATO would continue to follow the developments on the South-Eastern border of NATO very closely. "The security of the Alliance is indivisible, and we stand in strong solidarity with Turkey".
On 24 November 2015, after Turkey informed Allies about the downing of a Russian Air Force plane violating Turkish airspace, the North Atlantic Council held an extraordinary meeting. The NATO Secretary General stated: "we stand in solidarity with Turkey and support the territorial integrity of our NATO Ally, Turkey."
In the 2015 NATO Secretary General Annual Report, published in February 2016, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg offers an overview of the support NATO has been provided to Turkey over the last years (p. 57).
On the occasion of a visit to Turkey on 21 April 2016, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg commended Turkey for its strong commitment to the Alliance. (NATO Secretary General thanks Turkey for long-standing contribution to the Alliance, 21 April 2016). On 28 June 2016, Jens Stoltenberg strongly condemned the terrorist attack in Istanbul's Ataturk Airport.
Following the failed coup in Turkey which occurred on 15 July 2016, NATO Secretary General expressed a brief statement (NATO Secretary General statement on events in Turkey, 16 July 2016). Later on, the NATO spokesperson, Oana Lungescu, also stated: "NATO counts on the continued contributions of Turkey and Turkey can count on the solidarity and support of NATO." (NATO, 10 August 2016).
During a two-day visit to Ankara, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said: "NATO continues to stand in solidarity with Turkey, with increased naval and air presence, and with defensive missile systems on the border with Syria" (NATO, 8 September 2016). On the following day, Jens Stoltenberg added: "Turkey is a strong and valued member of our Alliance" (NATO, 9 September 2016 and Joint Press Conference, 9 September 2016)
After the twin attacks carried out in the centre of Istanbul on Saturday 10 December 2016 NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg described them as “horrific acts of terror”. In the same press release he underlined: “We stand united in solidarity with our ally, Turkey. We remain determined to fight terrorism in all its forms”.
This LibGuide is also intended to provide a few starting points to assist you with your research on issues related to Turkey and its relations with NATO and the EU as well as Turkish foreign and security policy. It contains English language and where available, French language material on issues related to these topics.
Turkey joined NATO in 1952 and shortly after Turkish forces fought with the allies in Korea. During the Cold War, Turkey was a "wing country" under NATO's strategic framework, standing tough against the Soviet Union for decades.
Following the United States, Turkey has the second-largest number of troops in the alliance.
Good places to start your research include the following web pages and documents:
Turkey's foreign relations:
A selection of interesting articles:
Turkey has been a candidate since 1999 and negotiating for accession since 2005.
On 15 October 2015, The European Commission reached an agreement with Turkey on a Joint Action Plan to step up their cooperation on migration management in a coordinated effort to tackle the refugee crisis. In line with the conclusions of the EU -Turkey Joint Action Plan, the leaders of the European Union and Turkey made a statement on 29 November 2015 where they agreed that the accession process needed "to be re-energized". The statement also reflected their determination to cooperate on foreign policy and security.