NATO head wants Turkey and Austria to solve conflict

NATO head wants Turkey and Austria to solve conflictNATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg urged Austria and Turkey on Friday to resolve a diplomatic dispute that has led to some cooperation programmers being blocked, Reuters reported on Friday.

"It is a very unfortunate situation and it means some cooperation programs can't be launched ... We strongly urge them to solve it, so that it won't have negative consequences for the cooperation," Stoltenberg told reporters during a visit to the Danish capital Copenhagen.

Austria, which is not a NATO member but cooperates with the alliance, led calls last year to halt Turkey's European Union accession talks. Vienna has also spoken out against Turkish politicians holding rallies in European countries.

Turkey, a NATO ally, has withdrawn from some alliance cooperation, saying the move is aimed only at Austria.

Fatma Pasaoglu, a spokeswoman for the Turkish NATO mission in Brussels, confirming on 16 March that there has been tension with Austria and consequently a blockade that is "only targeted at Austria".

However, NATO officials told Reuters on 15 March that Turkey's blocking of 2017 projects - mostly related to military training - has not only affected non-NATO Austria but also other countries that co-operate with the alliance without actually being members of it.
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