When Turkey says ‘Turkey is an ally’, U.S. says ‘not so fast’
Turkey is the “most important ally” in the fight against ISIS, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Thursday.
Turkey said Thursday it was joining forces with the U.N. and NATO allies to fight the terror group, and said it was providing training to help Kurdish fighters.
“This is not an alliance, it is an alliance between the United States and Turkey,” Erdogan said during a news conference in the capital Ankara.
“I am proud to announce that Turkey will join forces with NATO allies and the United Nations,” he added.
Turkey is the first NATO ally to formally announce a military cooperation with the coalition against ISIS in the wake of the Paris attacks.
Turkey has also committed itself to a $3.5 billion defense aid package for the U.-S.
and European allies in the event of an ISIS attack.NATO, which has spent billions of dollars to train and equip Iraqi and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, said Wednesday it had deployed more than 20,000 troops and up to 4,000 Peshmerga members to northern Iraq.
The Pentagon said the deployment was part of a broader mission to help the Kurds “to defeat ISIS.”