This file photo taken on January 21, 2016 shows German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen chatting with soldiers during a visit of the German Armed Forces Bundeswehr at the air base in Incirlik, Turkey. AFP / POOL / TOBIAS SCHWARZ
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Germany Monday insisted its lawmakers had the right to visit an air base in Turkey despite Ankara's opposition, in an escalating row between the NATO partners.A German delegation this month was to travel to the Incirlik base in southern Turkey, used to launch coalition raids against Daesh (ISIS) militants in Syria, but Turkey has blocked the trip.Germany in December agreed to send Tornado surveillance jets and tanker aircraft to Incirlik to aid the multinational coalition fighting Daesh and currently has about 240 soldiers stationed there.Chancellor Angela Merkel held fruitless talks with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the planned visit at a NATO summit in Warsaw at the weekend but her spokesman said Berlin would keep up the pressure.
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