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Türkiye’s Speaker Condemns CAATSA Sanctions in D.C.

Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye, Numan Kurtulmuş, highlighted Türkiye’s growing self-reliance in defense during his visit to Washington, D.C., for the NATO Parliament Speakers Summit. He noted the positive development of discussions on meeting Türkiye’s defense needs, particularly with the F-16 issue. However, Kurtulmuş asserted, “If our friends ignore Türkiye’s defense needs, Türkiye will now produce its defense needs on its own.”

Kurtulmuş emphasized Türkiye’s critical role within NATO, despite periodic criticism of the alliance’s support. He stressed the need for NATO to reassess its functions, especially amid global conflicts like the Russia-Ukraine crisis, to enhance both security and peace missions.

Addressing Türkiye-U.S. relations, Kurtulmuş described them as a strategic partnership with fluctuating dynamics. He stressed Türkiye’s commitment to resolving issues diplomatically and highlighted ongoing cooperation and disagreements.

Kurtulmuş emphasized that they do not find it appropriate for those who ignore Türkiye’s demand for the air defense system to turn the issue of Türkiye’s provision of air defense through other means into a political competition and political opposition.

Expressing that CAATSA sanctions were used against Türkiye as a political tool, Kurtulmuş said, “I believe that it is an unfair and double-standard sanction. It is clear that if our needs for air defense systems had already been met, such a point would not have come.” said.

He criticized Türkiye’s exclusion from the F-35 program as a double standard and underscored Türkiye’s advancements in defense, particularly in UAVs and UCAVs. Kurtulmuş emphasized Türkiye’s commitment to its national security priorities and questioned the lack of support from allies regarding air defense systems, such as the S-400.

Kurtulmuş reiterated Türkiye’s stance on self-sufficiency in defense, stating that Türkiye must meet its own defense needs to remain strong in a turbulent region.


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