Posted: 11:45 am PDT
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— ilhan tanir (@WashingtonPoint) September 3, 2015
— Matt Lee (@APDiploWriter) September 3, 2015
— Hannah Allam (@HannahAllam) September 3, 2015
LATEST – US says families can leave Incirlik airbase and Adana consulate, issues travel warning for southeast Turkey http://t.co/5KpRApLBYj
— DAILY SABAH (@DailySabah) September 3, 2015
On September 2, the U.S. Ambassador to Turkey John Bass was on CNN Turk TV talking about the coalition effort against ISIL:
“We have seen in the last week, Turkey start to fly combat missions against DAESH in Syria as part of the coalition effort; that’s a really important step forward. And we are already benefiting not only from Turkey’s active participation, but also from the ability to base U.S. and potentially other coalition aircraft and assets in Turkey which greatly reduces the time for those assets to reach targets in Syria, and therefore increases the capability of the coalition to pursue this military campaign.”
The American Consulate Adana is a very small post located less than 5 kilometers from Incirlik Air Force Base, a Turkish air base and hosts of the US 39th Air Base Wing. The previous time Adana was placed on “authorized departure” order was in September 2013 (see US Embassy Beirut and US Consulate Adana (Turkey) Now on Departure Orders for Non-Emergency Staff and Family Members). That, too, was done “out of an abundance of caution.”
The State Department has now released its Travel Warning on Turkey dated September 3:
The Department of State warns U.S. citizens traveling to or living in Turkey that the U.S. Consulate in Adana has authorized the voluntary departure of family members out of an abundance of caution following the commencement of military operations out of Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey.
On September 2, the Department of State permitted the departure of U.S. government family members from the U.S. Consulate in Adana, Turkey. U.S. citizens seeking to depart southern Turkey are responsible for making their own travel arrangements. There are no plans for charter flights or other U.S. government-sponsored evacuations; however, commercial flights are readily available and airports are functioning normally. The U.S. Consulate in Adana will continue to operate normally and provide consular services to U.S. citizens.
U.S. government employees continue to be subject to travel restrictions in southeastern Turkey. They must obtain advance approval prior to official or unofficial travel to the provinces of Hatay, Kilis, Gaziantep, Sanliurfa, Sirnak, Diyarbakir, Van, Siirt, Mus, Mardin, Batman, Bingol, Tunceli, Hakkari, Bitlis, and Elazig. The Embassy strongly recommends that U.S. citizens avoid areas in close proximity to the Syrian border.