January 23, 2013 - 13:15 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - German soldiers stationed as part of NATO’s mission to deploy Patriot air defense systems in the Mediterranean port of İskenderun located in Turkey’s Hatay province, were attacked by a group of Turkish activists.
According to Hurriyet Daily News, members of the Turkish Youth Union (TGB), linked to the Turkey Workers’ Party, tried to put sacks on the heads of the soldiers when they were off duty and wearing civilian clothes in the İskenderun city center.
According to Anatolia news agency, two soldiers were attacked while Doğan news agency reported that six soldiers, including a woman were targeted.
The soldiers took refuge in a jewelry store after getting into an altercation with the activists. Twenty-six activists, including TGB’s Chairman İlker Yücel were detained by the police. The İskendurun Prosecutors Office said that 14 suspects were taken into custody and 28 suspects were charged with intentionally attempting to cause harm.
The first delivery of Patriots missile batteries arrived in İskenderun on Monday. The air defense system will be operated by a Dutch military unit comprised of 270 soldiers and 240 German soldiers. The systems will be deployed in Turkey as part of a NATO decision to support Turkey’s air defense against a missile threat from Syria.