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Politics

Cyprus Will Allow US Troops for Diplomat Evacuation if Iranian Conflict Occurs

January 9, 2020

Cyprus’ government has given the go-ahead to let an American an American Rapid Deployment Forces unit use the island as a base if a conflict erupts with Iran over the US assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani with a drone strike in Iraq near the airport.

The force would be used to evacuate the US Embassy, remove diplomats and American citizens if an emergency over Iran affects the island.

The Cyprus News Agency later cited a source saying the US request did not have anything to do with using the island as a launching pad for “military operations,” against Iran if there’s retaliation.

State-funded broadcaster RIK News aired video footage Jan. 9 showing a C130 cargo plane and five or six Chinook helicopters over Paphos, saying the aircraft landed and were on stand-by at Andreas Papandreou Air Force Base, an active field next to Paphos International Airport.

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