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US denies sending troops to Turkey

Pentagon says reports that 123 US trainers traveled to Turkey last week are 'unfounded and erroneous.'

01.05.2015
US denies sending troops to Turkey

WASHINGTON 

There is no credibility to reports that Washington sent more than 100 troops to Turkey last week to train Syrian rebels, the Pentagon said Friday.

“U.S. personnel are just part of the multinational team of instructors and the report that 123 U.S. trainers had traveled to Turkey last week is both unfounded and erroneous,” Pentagon spokeswoman Elissa Smith said in response to an Anadolu Agency inquiry.

Multiple reports claimed Washington sent the soldiers and additional arms to Washington’s airbase in Incirlik, Turkey, and the Kirsehir military base in Hirfanli for a planned train and equip mission for Syria’s rebels.

Washington and Ankara agreed to the mission in February, but training has yet to begin.  

“A number of coalition personnel have already been deployed to the training sites to prepare for the arrival of the Syrian volunteers,” Smith said. “For operational security reasons we will not release the training locations or the composition of the multinational training team.”

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