A senior Iranian lawmaker says the deployment of NATO’s surface-to-air Patriot missiles along the Turkish border with Syria will create insecurity in Turkey.
“These missiles will not help provide security for Turkey because all the neighbors of Turkey are discontent with the deployment of these missiles,” Chairman of Iran Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee Alaeddin Boroujerdi said on Saturday.
He further pointed out that the deployment of Patriot missiles does not serve the interests of Turkey and NATO has imposed the missiles on Ankara.
On November 21, Ankara formally asked NATO to deploy the surface-to-air Patriot missiles on its border with Syria. In response, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the alliance would consider the Turkish request “without delay.”
Despite strong opposition from Russia, Syria and Iran, NATO approved Turkey’s request for the missile system on December 4 to defend its border with Syria.
“Those who know Syria as a country in the frontline of struggles against the Zionist regime [of Israel] are well aware of this country’s capabilities. Syria has a strong army and advanced weapons and Turkey is aware of this,” Boroujerdi noted.
The agreement to deploy missiles on Turkey’s border with Syria comes after months of fierce fighting between the Syrian army and the foreign-backed militants.
Many people, including large numbers of security forces, have been killed in the turmoil that began in Syria in March 2011.
Turkey claims it needs the Patriot missiles to defend itself against Syria. However, members of the Turkish opposition say there has never been any threat from the Syrian side and that Ankara’s claim aims to strengthen Turkey’s military presence in the region.