Gysi: Turkey bombs Kurds with information received from İncirlik

Prominent member of Die Linke Gregor Gysi stated that Turkey bombed Kurds using information received from İncirlik Air Base and demanded all German soldiers serving in Turkey be called back.

Gregor Gysi, who led Die Linke for a long time in Germany, is calling for the return of all German soldiers stationed in Turkey. Gysi pointed out that the German army in Turkey gave the information they gathered from the Syrian airspace to NATO and said, “The Turkish army uses this information to bomb Kurds.”

The crisis that started with Ankara rejecting once more a group of parliamentarians from the Federal Defense Commission asking to visit the German troops in the İncirilik Air Base continues. German opposition parties demand an immediate call back for the soldiers stationed in the İncirilik Air Base.

Gregor Gysi, long time leader of Die Linke, has been a part of the dispute and he demands all German soldiers serving in Turkey under the NATO umbrella be called back. Gysi shared a video he prepared over social media networks and dealt harsh criticisms to Germany’s policies on Turkey and the Kurds.


The video was viewed half a million times and in it, Gysi says: “The German army on duty in Turkey surveils with all their military equipment all of the Syrian air space and sends the information they acquire to NATO. This information is used by the US, other NATO countries, and at the same time by Turkey.”

Gysi points out that Turkey uses this information to bomb the Kurds in Syria and adds: “But it is those very Kurds that are fighting against ISIS on land. If this is the case, Turkey pointing their guns to the Kurds actually means pointing the guns to the USA. But in any case, our soldiers are indirectly helping the Kurdish massacre.” The German politician then asks the following question to the Federal Government:

“And may I ask, are we on the side of Kurds who fight against ISIS, or Turkey who fights against the Kurds? Putting aside the illogical situation as a whole, we have no business in Turkey or the Middle East in the military sense. For these reasons, we should pull back our soldiers and our weapons from Turkey immediately.


Meanwhile, the proposal by opposition parties to call back German soldiers from the İncirlik Air Base was discussed in the parliament yesterday afternoon. The Greens and Die Linke in opposition submitted the proposal for which the government issued contradictory remarks. Christian Democratic Union of Germany deputy Roderich Kiesewetter spoke on behalf of the federal government led by Merkel and said:

“It is indefensible that Turkey doesn’t allow German members of parliament to visit German soldiers in İncirlik Air Base. But I am against calling back the soldiers from İncirlik. Unilaterally and immediately calling back the soldiers is not in Europe’s or Germany’s interest. Calling back the soldiers can create certain consequences, this could lead Turkey to isolation and it could turn into an issue between Germany and Turkey.”

Kiesewetter stated that the matter should be handled at a diplomatic level at NATO and said: “What is important is that the soldiers are managed well, and the government official responsible for the army visits the soldiers. This matter should be discussed in the Defense Commission in a calm manner.”

But Die Linke and Greens MPs stated that the proposal should be approved and the soldiers should be called back. After the discussions, the proposal was referred to the Foreign Affairs Commission with Greens and Die Linke voting for and government parties SPD and CDU/CSU voting against.


German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel had held official meetings in the US yesterday during the day and pointed out that in case of a retreat from Turkey due to the İncirlik crisis, it would not be confined to only the soldiers stationed in İncirlik Air Base.

During his meeting with his US counterpart Rex Tillerson, Gabriel demanded that the US step in so the visit to German soldiers in İncirilik is permitted and called for the US to convince Turkey.

Gabriel said that the early warning aircrafts (AWACS) positionedi n Konya in line with the NATO Commission in İncirlik are related to each other and added: “This is an integrated decision. I believe it is hard to separate the two.”


One third of the AWACS personnel in NATO are German soldiers. Some 260 German soldiers in İncirlik partake scouting missions with the Tornado in the coalition efforts to fight ISIS.

In June 2016, the German Federal Parliament recognized the Armenian massacres of 1915 as a “genocide” with a majority vote. The Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and other Turkish officials say, “We won’t allow those MPs who signed that verdict” and started preventing German MPs from visiting the İncirlik Air Base.