BRUSSELS: Turkey is seeking an end to Nato’s counter-migration mission in the Aegean Sea and it is telling the US-led alliance that the sharp drop in refugees trying to get to Greece means there is no longer a need for warships to patrol its coast.

Turkish Defence Minister Fikri Isik told other Nato defence ministers on Wednesday there was no need for the mission to continue beyond the end of December, according to two people briefed on the exchanges, despite strong support across the alliance for the mission.

“This was a temporary mission, and the goal has been reached in this temporary mission. There is no need to extend it further,” Isik told reporters in Brussels on Thursday.

“Whether this Nato force is here or not, we will continue our battle against this migrant movement,” he said.

The uncompromising stance came as Nato prepares to help a separate EU migrant maritime mission off Libya’s coast, to which Turkey will send ships and planes to carry out air and sea patrols of traffickers sending refugees towards Italy.

Published in Dawn, October 28th, 2016

Opinion

Editorial

Noon leaks
Updated 27 Sep, 2022

Noon leaks

PMO audio leaks are a national security emergency that ought to be investigated at the highest level.
Cipher probe offer
27 Sep, 2022

Cipher probe offer

CONSIDERING the toxic political polarisation in the country, former prime minister Imran Khan’s suggestion that ...
Delaying Doha plans
27 Sep, 2022

Delaying Doha plans

WHEN Doha announced its intention to spend $3bn in different commercial and investment sectors of Pakistan around a...
Debt deferment
Updated 26 Sep, 2022

Debt deferment

Pakistan’s dollar funding needs for next 5 years have never been so large and world’s appetite to hold its hands never so poor.
Dengue concerns
26 Sep, 2022

Dengue concerns

AS weather conditions change in Pakistan, the threat of dengue looms large over the land. According to a warning...
Relic of colonialism
26 Sep, 2022

Relic of colonialism

THE law on sedition, one of several holdovers of colonial times, is among the most handy instruments for controlling...