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Cablegate: Turkey Asks for Pilot to Be Included in Space

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHAK #1535 2960850
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 230850Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY ANKARA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1048
INFO RUEUITH/ODC ANKARA TU
RHMFIUU/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JCS WASHDC

UNCLAS ANKARA 001535

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: NASA PREL TSPA TU
SUBJECT: TURKEY ASKS FOR PILOT TO BE INCLUDED IN SPACE
PROGRAM

On October 19, Cagatay Erciyes, MFA Deputy Director General
for Maritime and Aviation Affairs, convoked PolMil Counselor
to pass on a request which he said was important to FM
Davutoglu. Erciyes said that the Turkish Air Force had a
standing request in military channels since 2001 for a
Turkish Air Force pilot to participate in NASA's work with
the International Space Station. Erciyes claimed that
President Gul had considered raising the issue in his
telephone call with President Obama over the weekend, but,
Erciyes said, FM Davutoglu suggested that a standard approach
through diplomatic channels would be more appropriate.
Erciyes said, somewhat apologetically, that the issue had an
unusually high level of military support and would be raised
at the next meeting of Turkey's National Security Council.
2011 would mark the 100th anniversary of Turkey's Air Force
and the GOT hoped it could mark that year with a space flight
by a Turkish pilot. We agreed to pass the request to
appropriate agencies in Washington.

JEFFREY

"Visit Ankara's Classified Web Site at http://www.intelink.s
gov.gov/wiki/Portal:Turkey"

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