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German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen chats with soldiers during a visit of the German Armed Forces Bundeswehr at the air base in Incirlik, Turkey, January 21, 2016. REUTERS/Tobias Schwarz/Pool/File Photo(reuters_tickers)
BERLIN (Reuters) - Berlin may move its soldiers to another country if Ankara does not grant permission to members of the German parliament's defence committee to visit staff currently serving in a NATO mission on a Turkish air base, Chancellor Angela Merkel said.
Speaking at a Monday news conference, Merkel said it was essential for lawmakers to be able to visit the more than 250 soldiers serving at Incirlik air base in Turkey, where they are involved in a NATO mission targeting the Islamic State militant group in Syria.
"We will continue to talk with Turkey, but in parallel we will have to explore other ways of fulfilling our mandate," Merkel said. "That means looking at alternatives to Incirlik, and one alternative among others is Jordan."
(Reporting By Thomas Escritt; Editing by Michelle Martin)