Operation Northern Watch History
Published November 14, 2006
Operation Northern Watch was headquartered at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. The commanders of the operation were Brigadier General Robin E. Scott, U.S. Air Force and Brigadier General Levent Turkmen, Turkish Air Force.
ONW was the Combined Task Force charged with enforcing the no-fly zone north of the 36th parallel in Iraq and monitoring Iraqi compliance with UN Security Council resolutions 678, 687, and 688.
The northern no-fly zone was not an aggression against Iraq or a violation of its sovereignty, it was a necessary and legitimate measure to limit Iraq's aggressive air activities. The Operation Northern Watch coalition partners -- the United States, United Kingdom, and Turkey -- provided approximately 45 aircraft and more than 1,400 personnel to support Operation Northern Watch. The joint U.S. force includes soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines from the Navy, Army, Air Force and Marine Corps, all operating as part of the United States European Command.
Operation Northern Watch was the successor to Operation Provide Comfort, which officially ended in December, 1996. Operation Northern Watch began Jan. 1, 1997, with an initial mandate of six months. The Turkish parliament reviews and renews the ONW mandate semi-annually in June and December. Operation Northern Watch ended March 19, 2003 with the begining of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Chronology of Significant Events in the Northern No-Fly Zone