Germany has no choice but to pull out of Turkey airbase: Foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel

German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel speaks during a news conference in Ankara, Turkey on June 5, 2017.
German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel speaks during a news conference in Ankara, Turkey on June 5, 2017.PHOTO: REUTERS

ANKARA (Reuters) - Germany has no choice but to begin the process of pulling its forces out of Incirlik air force base in Turkey as the Turkish government will not allow all German lawmakers to visit troops there, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said on Monday (June 5).

"Turkey has made clear that, for domestic political reasons, it cannot approve visits of all lawmakers," Gabriel told a news conference after meeting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara.

As its operations are approved by parliament, German lawmakers must be able to visit the Bundeswehr, Gabriel added.

"Turkey must understand that in this situation, we must transfer German soliders out of Incirlik," he said. "In this situation, the Bundestag (parliament) will ask the government to find another location for the German soldiers in Incirlik."