Convergence between the Eurasian and the African plates in the West Anatolian-Aegean region results in a trench retreat due to slab roll-back and tearing of the subducted African lithosphere. The upper plate response of this process gave way to back-arc extension in the region. We have conducted a very detailed anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) study on the Neogene rocks in SW Anatolia to unravel the style and magnitudes of deformation. For this purpose, from 83 sites in 11 structurally homogeneous domains, 1,680 paleomagnetic samples were analyzed. The results show that AMS fabrics are related to the tectonic deformation and that the magnetic lineation (maximum susceptibility axis, k(1)) is parallel to inferred maximum extension, while minimum susceptibility (k(3)) is typically normal to the bedding plane, corresponding to a preserved compaction associated with deposition fabric. The intermediate axis (k(2)) is parallel to a second extension direction and indicates that the region has been under the control of multi-directional extension during the Neogene. Two main magnetic lineation directions are identified and represent Oligocene to middle Miocene E-W, and late Miocene to Pliocene NW-SE oriented extension. The magnetic lineation directions are dominantly parallel or perpendicular to the general strikes of the normal faults. The results show that the deformation in the region resembles two differentially stretched rubber sheets under the influence of SW oriented extension, exerted by the southward retreating Eastern Mediterranean subduction system.