U.S. troops at Turkey’s Incirlik air base were at the highest force protection level, known as “condition Delta,” after power was cut off at the base and the Turkish government closed the airspace around the site in the hours following a foiled military coup attempt, a U.S. official told ABC News today.
Turkish officials told ABC News they believe Turkish planes docked at Incirlik Air Base took part in Friday night’s coup attempt, which is why the airspace is locked down.
Turkey allows the United States to use the air base for operations associated with its air campaign against ISIS in Iraq
There are 2,200 U.S. personnel in Turkey, including 1,500 stationed at Incirlik.
A Pentagon spokesman said the loss of commercial power to Incirlik has not affected operations because the U.S. facilities there are operating on internal power sources. U.S. officials are working with their Turkish counterparts to resume air operations at the air base. All U.S. government personnel in Turkey appear safe and secure, he added.
“Turkish government has closed its airspace to military aircraft, and as a result air operations at Incirlik Air Base have been halted at this time,” Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook told ABC News. “In the meantime, U.S. Central Command is adjusting flight operations in the counter-ISIL campaign to minimize any effects on the campaign.”
A faction of the Turkish military took over state TV, imposed martial law and a curfew and attacked the police headquarters in the capital of Ankara on Friday night. The Turkish government declared the attempted military coup over Saturday morning.
Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said 161 people were killed in the overnight coup attempt and 1,440 people were injured.
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