LONDON (Realist English). The UK has lifted all restrictions on arms exports to Turkey, the Daily Sabah reports.
“It felt more positive to see that positive steps that were promised earlier have been taken, implemented and removed, especially regarding some restrictions imposed on Turkey,” said Ismail Demir, the head of Turkey’s Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB). “It is important to take these positive steps, to act in the spirit of alliance, and we have seen how positive a positive agenda can be formed if the U.K. side behaves in accordance with this spirit,” Demir told reporters during his official visit to London.
According to him, important details on technical issues were discussed and fundamental steps were taken to bring bilateral ties to a higher level in the field of defense. Opportunities for cooperation in other countries were also discussed at the meetings.
The British government in December announced it would resume exports but said new export licenses would be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
It had halted exports to Turkey after its military operation seeking to clear northern Syria of the terrorist organization PKK’s Syrian wing, the YPG, in 2019.
Turkey and the U.K. have been engaged in close defense cooperation as British engine maker Rolls-Royce is said to be involved in the process to produce an engine for Turkey’s National Combat Aircraft (MMU).
The U.K. has also expressed interest to buy Turkish-made armed drones, which U.K. Defense Secretary Ben Wallace had called a “game-changer.” Turkey has sold its drones to many countries, including Ukraine.