The Aegean Army or Fourth Army is one of the four main formations of the Turkish Army. It covers the entire west coast of the Anatolia peninsula and has its headquarters in İzmir. It was organised in the 1970s in response to political tensions with Greece - the ongoing Aegean dispute.
|Part of||Turkish Army|
|General Galip Mendi|
Its stated mission is to protect Turkey's territory on its western coast. This is directed against the perceived threat posed by Greece's armament of the Aegean Sea islands. Greece, on the other hand, perceives the presence of the Aegean Army as a threat to its islands, citing strong offensive capabilities ascribed to the Aegean Army as well as the exposed and isolated geographical position of the islands, the 5 most populous of which are several hundred kilometres distant from the Greek mainland, yet sit only 2-3km from Turkey's, as reasons of concern. Greek sources particularly point to the strong amphibian forces maintained by the Aegean Army as an indicator of its offensive nature. Turkey has countered such concerns by stating that besides being of a fundamentally defensive nature it is "basically a training army".
The Army has been reported to consist of the following units and organizations:
- Turkey and Greece: Time to Settle the Aegean Dispute
- https://wikileaks.org/plusd/cables/1975IZMIR00162_b.html - 1975 United States State Department report of creation of army