UK Reviews All Arms Export Licences to Turkey: FT
The UK government is to review all arms export licences to Turkey as a result of concern over its military operation against Kurdish forces in Syria, Financial Times reports.
The move has not yet been formally announced, but the Financial Times understands that British ministers have ordered a full review into sales of Turkish arms that could be used in the operation in Syria and are suspending awards of new licences pending the outcome. Officials were not able to say when the review was likely to conclude, but the investigation began shortly after Turkey’s first incursion into north-eastern Syria last week.
France, Germany and Finland have already announced curbs on arms sales to Turkey and EU foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg on Monday urged member states to consider imposing similar restrictions as concern over the assault intensified. However, the bloc has limited leverage since it is reluctant to jeopardise Ankara’s co-operation on counter-terrorism and anti-migration operations. The ministers agreed to “commit to strong national positions”, and added that Turkey’s military action was “resulting in more civilians suffering and further displacement and severely hindering access to humanitarian assistance”.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan argues that his forces are targeting Kurdish terrorist groups linked to a militia that has fought a 35-year insurgency inside Turkey. But an estimated 200,000 people have had to flee from the region, and scores of civilians are thought to have been killed.
The UK has licensed £1.1bn worth of arms to Turkey since Mr Erdogan became president five years ago, according to the Campaign Against the Arms Trade. These include £206m of licences for aircraft, helicopters and drones, £84m on armoured vehicles and tanks, and £82m on grenades bombs, missiles and countermeasures. Recommended Syrian crisis Assad regime the big winner in Turkey-Syria chaos The decision to review licences is likely to put a strain on the relationship between Turkey and Britain, which has remained strong even as Ankara’s ties with other western nations have grown more fraught. Britain rallied in support of Turkey in the wake of a violent attempted coup in 2016, and the two countries have co-operated closely in recent years on trade, counter-terrorism, migration and refugees. The UK has sought to take advantage of a rapid expansion of the Turkish defence sector to find opportunities for British aerospace companies. These include seeking to help BAE Systems to win contracts to help build Turkey’s first indigenous fighter jet, worth £100m over five years.
Yet British ministers have issued rare public criticism of Turkey after the launch of its operation against Syrian Kurdish forces last week.
Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, called on Ankara to show “maximum restraint” and voiced concern that the incursion against Kurdish groups that spearheaded the campaign against Isis jihadis in Syria would jeopardise counter-terrorism efforts. Boris Johnson used a phone call with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday to express “grave concern” at the Turkish incursion.
A spokesperson for the Department for International Trade refused to comment on the review and suspension on Monday but said the UK “takes its arms export control responsibilities very seriously”. “Each licence application is assessed on a case-by-case basis using strict criteria, including respect for international humanitarian law,” she said. “We are monitoring the situation in Syria very closely and will not grant export licences that are inconsistent with licensing criteria.”
- Turkey will Hit Syrian Government Forces Anywhere if Troops Hurt: Erdogan Speaking in Ankara, Erdogan said Turkey is determined to push Syrian government forces beyond Turkish observation posts in the northwestern Idlib region by the end of February. “We will do this by any...
- The Syrian Army Took Control Of Saraqeb The Syrian army has taken control of a strategic northwestern crossroads town, its latest gain in a weeks-long offensive against the country's last major rebel bastion,
- Joint Turkish-Russian Patrol In Northern Syria Was Canceled Joint Turkish-Russian patrol scheduled for today in northern Syria’s Ayn al-Arab was canceled after Syrian regime attacks targeted Turkish soldiers in Idlib
- Number of Turkish Soldiers Killed In Idlib Increased The number of Turkish soldiers killed as a result of shelling in Idlib increased to six, NTV reported referring to the Ministry of National Defense of Turkey.
- Children Among Eight Killed in Syria as Missile Hits School Syrian forces launched a wide ground offensive last week in the northwest, after weeks of bombardment that displaced tens of the thousands of people in Idlib province.
Armen Sarkissian Received Ambassador Of China To Armenia
First Group Of Passangers Left The Diamond Princess
Queen Margrethe II of Denmark ReceiveD Armenian Speaker of Parliament
Nikol Pashinyan Made A Motion To Grant Armenian Citizenship To A 105-Year Old Italian-Armenian
PM Pashinyan Receives EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the Crisis in Georgia
Some Roads in Armenia are Closed and Difficult to Pass
Initiative to Commemorate Armenian Genocide Victims Memory Registered in Ukrainian Parliament
Trump: Cases Stemming from Mueller Probe Should Be 'Thrown Out'
Andrzej Kasprzyk Takes Actions Stemming from His Mandate: OSCE (Tert.am)
Dubai Crown Prince Has Posted a Video which Shows a Pilot Flying an Iron Man-Like Jet Pack '5,000ft above the Ground at 150mph'
Armenia Defense Minister Receives EU Special Representative-Led Delegation
Incumbent Ghani Confirmed Winner of Afghan Presidential Poll After Five-Month Delay
"Citizens Should be Convinced that the Government Does Not Embezzle in State Funds" - Tax Reform Concept Discussed in Government
Haftar-Led Libyan National Army Says It Destroyed a Turkish Vessel With Weapons in Port of Tripoli
Parliament Speaker Says Georgia Moving forward, Opposition Interrupts with USSR Anthem
EU to Give Turkey More Time to Avoid Tax Blacklisting
Turkish Army Sent 300 Military Vehicles To Idlib
Zelensky Calls Extra NSDC Meeting On Situation In Donbas
Chief of General Staff of the Armenian Armed Forces Not Going to Resign
Armen Sarkissian Sent a Congratulatory Message to the President of Moldova on the Occasion of his Birth Anniversary
Garo Paylan Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize: Organizations Can Join the Initiative and Give Their Vote to Him
Because of the Armenian Genocide Azerbaijani-Turkish Designer Says He Will Never Make a Dress for Kim Kardashian
For the First Time Ever Istanbul's Mayor Issues a Condolence Note on the Day of the Assassination of Hrant Dink
The King of Jordan: “The Saint Karapet Armenian Apostolic Church in Jordan is the Testament to the Enduring Armenian History in our Country”
Death to Armenia: Pan-Turkic Fascists in Iran Attemted to Play an Armenophobic Trick
Turkey's First Professional Boxer Garbis Zakaryan Dies at 90
FIDE Bans Organizer of Turkish Tournament who Asked Armenian Delegate to Cancel Participation: Maria Gevorgyan
Syrian-Armenian Soldier Killed in Idlib During Firefight with Terrorists
Garbis Zakaryan - Turkey's First Professional Boxer
The people of Artsakh have never participated in the elections of Azerbaijan either now, or throughout the entire history of the Republic of Azerbaijan: Anna Naghdalyan
Wind: 3 km/h