197 Turkish planes fly in supplies

A couple holds hands as they walk up the Helix Bridge at Marina Bay Sands on July 8, 2017.
A couple holds hands as they walk up the Helix Bridge at Marina Bay Sands on July 8, 2017. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

ANKARA • Turkey has sent 197 cargo planes, 16 trucks and one ship to Qatar to meet its daily needs since a dispute broke out last month between Qatar and other Gulf states, Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said yesterday.

At a meeting with Mr Zeybekci in the Turkish capital Ankara, Qatar's Economy Minister Ahmed Jassim al-Thani said Doha's sea and air trade was continuing without disruption despite sanctions.

Meanwhile, Qatar on Tuesday said more Turkish troops had arrived at a military base in Doha after Ankara fast-tracked legislation last month for more soldiers to be deployed there.

The base in Qatar houses Turkish soldiers under an agreement signed in 2014, and training has been ongoing since June 19.

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Ankara has backed Qatar after Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain cut all economic and diplomatic ties, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism, a charge it denies.

"This defence cooperation between Doha and Ankara is part of their common defence vision to support anti-terrorism efforts and maintain security and stability in the region," a statement by Qatar's Armed Forces said.

However, the statement did not give the number of Turkish troops at the base or how many had just joined to bolster the deployment.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 13, 2017, with the headline '197 Turkish planes fly in supplies'. Print Edition | Subscribe