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German Lawmakers Back Troop Withdrawal From Turkey


A technician works on a German Tornado jet at the air base in Incirlik.

Germany's lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, has voted by a wide majority to move reconnaissance planes flying missions against the Islamic State (IS) group from a base in Turkey amid tensions between the two NATO members.

The lawmakers voted 461-85 late on June 21 to back a Defense Ministry decision to move six Tornado planes, a refueling plane, and around 270 troops from the Incirlik base to Azraq, Jordan.

The planes should be fully back in service in October.

Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen decided to relocate the operation after Ankara refused to let German lawmakers visit troops on the Incirlik base.

Relations between Berlin and Ankara have been strained by a number of issues recently.

They include Turkey's jailing of two German journalists, and German local authorities' banning of rallies by Turkish ministers earlier this year.

Based on reporting by AP and dpa
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