Turkey to invoke NATO’s Article 4 over Syrian tension?

Hillary Clinton has said that NATO member Turkey may invoke Article 4 of the alliance’s charter, which sees consultations among the member countries when the security of any parties involved, are in danger in regard to escalating tension along Turkey’s Syria border.Turkey already has discussed with NATO, for the duration of our ministerial meetings over the last two days, the burden of Syrian refugees on Turkey, the outrageous shelling across the border from Syria into Turkey a week ago, and that Turkey is contemplating formally invoking Article 4 of the North Atlantic Treaty,” said Clinton on Thursday, during a ministerial meeting of the “Friends of Syria” group. The minutes of the meeting are posted on the website of the State Department. The “Friends of Syria” group brings with each other the US, European and Arab nations as well as Turkey, which seek the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Article 4 of the NATO charter says that the Allies “consult with each other whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the parties is threatened.”

Two Turkish nationals and two Syrians were injured in a refugee camp in Kilis province when Syrian forces fired across the border during clashes with opposition fighters, who reportedly had attempted to seize control of the border gate and then fled to Turkey earlier this month. Erdoğan known as the incident a border violation and mentioned Turkey would pursue measures under international law in response, raising prospects of military retaliation.

On Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said in the course of a NATO ministerial meeting in Brussels that Turkey has not yet asked for NATO aid in regards to the border incident.

Earlier, Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan mentioned “NATO has responsibilities to protect the Turkish border according to Article 5,” referring to the border incident.


Sources and more information:

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