Turkey’s foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu says NATO is preparing to deploy patriot missiles to bolster defenses on its border with Syria. The surface-to-air missiles will be able to shoot down aircraft up to 160 kilometers away.

Davutoglu’s comments were reported on Al Jazeera television news.

The foreign minister’s comments appeared to be in direct contradiction to a statement from the Turkish Prime Minster Recip Tayyip Erdogan, who has denied that his country has made a request to NATO for the missiles.

“We do not have any thoughts of aquiring patriots by paying money,” Erdogan said in a press statement quoted by the Turkish Anadolu Agency.

NATO also said that they hadn’t received an official request from Turkey for the missiles.

Patriot is a long-range, all-weather, all-altitude system designed to counter tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and advanced aircraft.

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