Turkey's withdrawal of some NATO cooperation with partner countries is only aimed at Austria, a spokeswoman for Ankara's mission to the military alliance said yesterday.
NATO officials told Reuters on Wednesday that Turkey's blocking of 2017 projects - mostly military training ones - has not only affected Austria but also other countries that are not members of the alliance but cooperate with it.
"There have been some tensions with Austria and a resulting blockage. It is, however, only targeted at Austria, the other partners are not targeted at all," said Fatma Paşaoğlu, spokeswoman for Turkey's mission to NATO in Brussels.
The training program is reportedly the Partnership for Peace (PfP), which aims at creating trust between NATO and other states, including some from the former Soviet Union.
A spokesman for Austria's Defense Ministry said the blockade has been going on for months.
Vienna has been vocally against Turkey's EU membership accession talks, and recently against Turkish politicians holding rallies on the upcoming referendum in Turkey. Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz said last summer that Vienna demands the halting of Turkey-EU talks, urging other member states for support.
The moves infuriated Ankara, which withdrew its ambassador from Vienna in August.
The spat could also mean that Austrian officials may encounter problems when accrediting for NATO buildings, a source with knowledge of the matter said.
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