A senior Saudi defense official revealed that Saudi Arabia has deployed warplanes to a Turkish airbase in order to "intensify" its operations against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria, the AFP (Agence France-Presse) website reports today (February 14, 2016).
"The Saudi kingdom now has a presence at Incirlik airbase in Turkey," Brigadier General Ahmed al-Assiri said on Saudi television last night.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said yesterday that Saudi jets would be deployed at Incirlik , and the two countries could participate in ground operations against IS in Syria. Saudi Arabia said last week that it was considering sending 150,000 troops to Syria to fight IS.
Saudi Arabia and Turkey are both opposed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and would like to see him overthrown. Assad's foreign minister warned last week that any ground intervention would "amount to aggression that must be resisted ."