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U.S. official: Turkey's delay of military ops is political move

  • Story Highlights
  • Source: U.S. officials uncomfortable about excluding Israel from exercise
  • U.S. military units were to to have participated as well in military exercise
  • Exercises were to have started Monday and run through Friday
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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Turkey's decision this week to postpone a NATO war exercise appears to have been a political decision intended to exclude the Israelis, a senior U.S. military official told CNN Tuesday.

The official, who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to discuss the issue publicly, said U.S. officials were uncomfortable about excluding Israel and so welcomed postponing the maneuvers, in which U.S. military units were to have participated as well.

The exercises were to have started Monday and run through October 23.

About Turkey's announcement, State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Tuesday, "We think it's inappropriate for any nation to be removed from an exercise like this at the last minute."

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