Presidential security begins using Turkey-made weapons after Erdoğan’s call to give up US’ Sig Sauer
Turkish presidential security personnel began using Turkey-made weapons on Oct. 13, a day after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called on to halt using the U.S.-made Sig Sauer guns within the police forces, in a decision that came after the latest spat between the two allies over mutual suspension of visa services.
Police officers and special operations forces missioned at the Turkish presidency is now using Turkey-made Yavuz16 weapons and the MPT-76 – the Turkish acronym for “National Infantry Rifle” - instead of the U.S.-made Sig Sauer.
On Oct. 13, the president had urged security personnel to use weapons produced in the country after the visa spat with Washington.
“I am saying to our [interior] minister from here. Weapons dubbed Sig Sauer will not be used in our security departments from now on. We will use our own weapons,” Erdoğan said.
Yavuz 16, which has been produced since 1997 by the state-run Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation (MKEK) and private GİRSAN, is known as the standard gun of the Turkish Armed Forces.
MPT-76, or the “National Infantry Rifle,” and the caliber of its 7.62 millimeter NATO round, has an effective range of up to 600 meters and is capable of firing 600 rounds per minute at a muzzle velocity of 800 meters per second, according to MKEK.
It has been described “as effective as the G-3, reliable as the AK-47 and practical as the M-16.”
Meanwhile, Turkish industrialists producing national weapons across the country welcomed Erdoğan’s call to halt using the U.S.-made weapons.
Several industrialists told state-run Anadolu Agency that the move encouraged their efforts in production as they vowed to do their part in the government’s bid.