Turkey engages with Russia on defense systems due to West’s reluctance: FM
The reason why Turkey was seeking cooperation in the field of defense with non-Western countries like Russia was the West’s unwillingness to share technology and jointly produce military equipment, Turkey’s top diplomat has said.
Turkey and Russia agreed to increase cooperation in defense, despite the fact the former is a NATO ally and its military is based on NATO-standardized military weaponry and logistics.
“Turkey is under the terror threat posed by Daesh [the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant - ISIL] and the [outlawed] PKK [Kurdistan Workers’ Party]. Threats are posed from Syria as well. Despite so many threats, the decision taken by NATO is not implemented. We tell them that [NATO’s] air defense system should cover all of Turkey. Yes, there is a decision but no realization,” Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said.
Germany and some other European countries removed their Patriot air defense systems from Turkey at a moment when threats against Turkey sharply increased, Çavuşoğlu said, complaining that Western countries were also cold to Turkey’s call for a transfer of technology and joint production of such systems.
“But, Turkey needs to establish its own air defense system and it needs to develop its own technology with the cooperation of other countries. If you [the West] do not do it, if you do not approach us as NATO allies and if you look at Turkey with a different eye, then Turkey has to set off on a quest,” he said.
“Turkey is obliged to develop these technologies, provide its own security and build its own defense system,” he added.