US Air Force Boeing KC-135R
A U.S. Air Force Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft lands at Incirlik air base in Adana, Turkey, August 10, 2015.REUTERS/Murad Sezer

The US has ordered families of its defence personnel and diplomats out of parts of Turkey following growing security fears. Family dependents are being moved out of Adana, Izmir and Mugla provinces.

The US European Command assured that the move was not a permanent one but "intended to mitigate the risk to [Department of Defense] elements and personnel, including family members." Turkey has been hit by a series of fatal bombings in key cities.

Nearly 100 people have been killed in Turkey in five separate terrorist attacks since the start of 2016. Two of these attacks were attributed to Isis while the others were carried out by Kurdish separatists.

In addition to fighting Kurdish militants, Turkey is also trying hard to prevent the unrest in Syria spilling over into its territory. The US State Department has warned all citizens against travel to south-eastern Turkey. Official travel by staff in Turkey has also been restricted to "mission-critical" movement only.

US citizens have been warned of "increased threats from terrorist groups throughout Turkey and to avoid travel to south-eastern Turkey." The decision to remove family members was made in consultation with the Turkish government, the European Command said.

"We understand this is disruptive to our military families, but we must keep them safe and ensure the combat effectiveness of our forces to support our strong ally Turkey in the fight against terrorism," the statement added.

"Foreign and US tourists have been explicitly targeted by international and indigenous terrorist organisations," a State Department statement said. "US citizens are reminded to review personal security plans and remain vigilant at all times."

Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said the decision was made out of an "abundance of caution." He said: "There's no specific threat that triggered this but a broader decision based on what we've seen in the region."

Around 5,000 US service personnel and dependents are based at the Incirlik air base in the southern city of Adana. The US launches air strikes on Isis fighters in Syria and Iraq from this air base.

Last July, officials banned troops and their families from visiting the markets and kebab restaurants that have flourished outside the base's gates, due to security concerns. Two months later, the government offered military families the option to evacuate voluntarily.

The option was only taken up by a few family members. The evacuation order is now an order and no longer voluntary. CNN reported that the military had already closed the base's Department of Defense School for children, with assignments being sent to children at home.

The State Department also confirmed that it had ordered the evacuation of family members of employees at the US Consulate in Adana and family members of US government civilian employees in the western Izmir and Muglar provinces.