ANKARA - The Turkish parliament voted at an extraordinary session Tuesday to authorize the government to send troops to the UN force in Lebanon.

Deputy speaker Nevzat Pakdil said 340 of the 533 lawmakers present in the 550-seat house voted for the deployment; 192 voted against and one abstained.

Under the motion, Turkey will send a naval force to patrol the eastern Mediterranean, deploy troops, help train the Lebanese army and support allied countries in naval and air transport.

The motion foresees a one-year deployment, but it is not yet clear how many troops will be deployed, nor when or where.

Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has said the number of soldiers is not likely to exceed 1,000.

Details of the deployment were expected to become clearer after talks here Wednesday between Turkish leaders and visiting UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who arrived in Ankara hours before the vote.

09/05/2006 18:10 GMT

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