SEPTEMBER 30, 2016, JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) – Air Force assignments to Turkey are now unaccompanied, 12-month tours, effective Sept. 21, Air Force officials said Sept. 29.
The decision was made taking into account the region’s current security environment and in consultation with the State Department and Turkish government, which resulted in eliminating the 24-month accompanied tour option and reducing the 15-month unaccompanied tour for U.S. military members, said William Houston, the Air Force Personnel Center assignments programs and procedures branch.
“This affects all Airmen that arrive in Turkey after Sept. 21, 2016,” Houston said. “Airmen with families who were planning to elect the accompanied tour need to be aware of the change before they make any move plans.”
The 24-month tour option for all civilians at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, has been eliminated and a 12-month unaccompanied tour is now required. Unless individually approved otherwise by the U.S. Air Forces in Europe commander, civilians currently serving a 24-month tour will have their tour automatically changed to a 12-month tour.
Affected military and civilian Airman should contact their base personnel sections to confirm they have accurate, updated orders. AFPC will work one on one with Airmen who experience legitimate hardships as a result of the change, he said.
AFPC will send an email notification to all affected Airmen and is working with members who elected the accompanied tour to resolve problems related to the tour-length change.
“They’ll be allowed to request a home base or follow-on assignment and we’ll work with them individually to help them with this change. Cancellation requests will be considered, but that will be case by case and depend on mission impact, reporting dates, a possible hardship situation and other factors,” Houston said.
Airmen currently serving 15-month unaccompanied tours will complete their assignments without curtailment or no later than Aug. 31, 2017. Airmen selected for or who volunteered for the short, unaccompanied tour will be unaffected except for tour length.
All those headed to Incirlik AB need to be aware that shipment of household goods is limited to 10 percent of the full Joint Travel Regulation entitlement. Shipment of pets is no longer authorized due to the unavailability and unpredictability of transportation into the region. Service and special needs animals remain unrestricted. Automobiles are also no longer authorized during a permanent change of station.
Military and civilian personnel assigned to U.S. Embassy or the Security Cooperation Organizations duties are not affected by this change. Exceptions to the Joint Travel Regulations are available for civilian employees assigned to Incirlik AB and Ankara Air Station.