The United States says they withdraw its military from Turkish military bases, including Incirlik Air Base and Kurecik base. According to Pentagon, Washington uses these bases only with the permission of Ankara, therefore, the U.S. will withdraw from Turkey, if counter sanctions are imposed against them.
"We consider the status of our troops in Turkey as a symbol of our long-standing commitment to cooperation and protection of our NATO ally and strategic partner," TASS cited the U.S. Defence Ministry as saying.
The Pentagon also noted Turkey’s contribution to NATO’s missions in Afghanistan, Kosovo and Iraq, adding that it is important "for the purposes of the U.S. national defense strategy." The ministry indicated that they seek to maintain these relations, while calling on Turkey to pursue a more constructive policy "regarding the S-400 and other areas of disagreement."
Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey may close the Incirlik air base for the United States if Washington imposes sanctions on Ankara over Turkey's purchase of Russia's S-400 missile defense systems.
Deputy head of the Council of the Russian Diplomats Association Andrey Baklanov, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that so far it is just a usual exchange of diplomatic threats. "There is already a tradition of exchanging statements, including in Twitter, to scare each other. I think that the parties are still not ready to violate certain stable standards of relations between Turkey and the United States," he stressed.
"Turkey’s collective commitments to NATO, the allied relations between the two countries will not change either. Their cooperation in the Alliance refers to the global aspects of the foreign policy of both states," Andrei Baklanov predicts.
At the same time, the diplomat recalled that the presence at the Incirlik and Kurecik bases is important primarily for the Americans, not for Turkey. "Ankara allowed Washington to deploy the base, knowing that it is viewed negatively by Russia. Nevertheless, Turkey went for it in the framework of military-political cooperation with the United States," the deputy head of the Council of the Russian Diplomats Association said.