Turkey conducts fresh military exercise on Syria border

(Photo: AA)

August 14, 2012, Tuesday/ 15:52:00

The Turkish military held maneuvers on the border with Syria on Tuesday, joined by tanks and armored personnel carriers.

The exercise, which took place in the border province of Kilis, lasted for an hour. The tanks participating in the maneuver were equipped with night-vision thermal cameras, and the ATILGAN Pedestal Mounted Stinger Systems were also part of the drill, the Anatolia news agency reported.

Such drills are carried out at intervals at both day and night to test the combat capability of military personnel, said the news agency.

Turkey, one of the staunchest opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, declared a change in the rules of military engagement on its border with Syria after a Turkish military jet crashed off the Syrian coast in the Mediterranean in June. Ankara at first believed the jet was downed by the missiles of Syrian forces, although subsequent statements from the military have cast doubt on this version of events. A military report based on an examination of pieces salvaged from the wreckage of the plane has given no indication that the plane was downed by a missile or anti-aircraft fire, according to recent reports in the Turkish media. 

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