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Patriot missiles in Turkey harmful to region security: IRGC

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) second-in-command says the deployment of NATO Patriot missiles along Turkey’s border with Syria is harmful to regional security.

“We consider the entry of any new [military] system from transregional forces into the region to be harmful to regional security, as we believe it will help create arms race while exacerbating tensions,” Brigadier General Hossein Salami said on Tuesday.

The IRGC commander added that the deployment of foreign military systems in other countries is not a good sign of the political independence of those states and regional countries should prevent deployment of such systems in their territories.

Despite strong opposition from Russia, Syria and Iran, the NATO military alliance on Tuesday, December 4, 2012, approved Turkey’s request for the deployment of Patriot surface-to-air missiles along its border with Syria.

The decision followed Ankara’s formal request to NATO on November 21, to deploy the Patriot missiles on its border with Syria.

Ankara’s request came after tensions between Turkey and its southern neighbor soared in early October when shells coming from Syria landed in the Turkish border town of Akcakale killing five civilians.

However, many have slammed NATO’s plan, saying it is meant to open the door for military intervention in Syria

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