Germany Begins Moving Patriot Batteries to Turkey

Two Patriot air-defense batteries were shipped out of Germany on Tuesday on their way toward Turkey, Deutsche Welle reported.

A cargo vessel loaded with the units sailed from the Lübeck-Travemünde seaport in northeast Germany. German troops were scheduled to fly to Turkey on Tuesday to prepare for arrival of the Patriot batteries later this month.

The Netherlands and the United States are also each deploying two Patriot units to Turkey. All are expected to be operational by late January at different locations near the nation's border with Syria.

NATO intends the systems to protect its member state against missiles and other airborne threats from Syria, where a civil war is estimated to have killed 60,000 people. Syrian shells have already landed in Turkish territory, reportedly causing several deaths, and the Assad government is said to have fired Scud ballistic missiles against rebel forces.

January 8, 2013
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Two Patriot air-defense batteries were shipped out of Germany on Tuesday on their way toward Turkey, Deutsche Welle reported.