Panetta signs order to send Patriot missiles to Turkey

U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has signed an order to send two Patriot air defense missile batteries and 400 American troops to Turkey as part of a North Atlantic Treaty Organization effort to protect Turkish territory from a potential cross-border missile attack by Syria.

Panetta signed the deployment order Friday en route to Turkey from Afghanistan, according to Pentagon press secretary George Little.

“The purpose of this deployment is to signal very strongly that the United States, working closely with our NATO allies, is going to support the defense of Turkey,” Little told reporters aboard the secretary’s plane.


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