German's Cabinet has approved sending German Patriot air defense missiles to Turkey to defend against possible attacks from Syria.

Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere announced Thursday that two batteries with a total of 400 soldiers would be sent to the border area for one year, although the deployment could be shortened.

The decision must be endorsed by the German Parliament, but approval is assured.

The Dutch Cabinet is expected to announce approval later Thursday contingent on parliamentary approval.

The Western alliance decided this week to approve sending the weapons to prevent cross-border attacks against Turkey.