Cyber technologies, anti-riot equipment emerge as niche market in Turkish defense industry
Turkey’s local defense companies and their foreign partners may see a near-boom in smaller but specialist industries in the coming years, including cyber technologies, anti-riot equipment and a variety of gear for the country’s special forces, industry sources agree.
“These will probably become niche markets with a growing number of players in the years ahead,” a senior defense industry official said.
Only this year, Turkey hosted about a dozen conferences on cyber security and new technologies. The most recent one was on Nov. 19-20, bringing together 450 military officers, cyber experts, cyber defense officials and industry representatives from Turkey, the United States, Britain, Germany, France, Canada, Italy, Finland, Hungary, Albania, Azerbaijan and South Korea. 05.12.13 More
Davutoğlu denies Turkey has security forces in Syria
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has denied claims that Turkey has security forces in war-torn Syria in his response to a question submitted to Parliament by an opposition deputy.
Responding to the question from main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Kahramanmaraş deputy Durdu Özbolat whether Turkey has security forces in Syria, Davutoğlu replied that such an allegation does not reflect reality.
Davutoğlu noted that Turkey's support for the Syrian people and its legitimate opposition was based on the will to establish a new Syria in which there is peace and democracy, adding that Turkey's support for the opposition was based on this fact. 03.12.13 More
Russian military inspectors to conduct monitoring flight over Turkey
Russian military inspectors will conduct a monitoring flight over Turkey under the international Open Skies Treaty on Monday, Nov 25, a Russian Defense Ministry official said, according to RIA Novosti.
“A group of Russian inspectors is scheduled to conduct a surveillance flight over the Republic of Turkey on board an An-30B aircraft in the period November 25 to 29 as part of the implementation of the international Open Skies Treaty,” said Sergei Ryzhkov, head of the ministry's National Nuclear Risk Reduction Center. 25.11.13 More
Turkey, Iraq agree to open two new border gates
Ankara and Baghdad have agreed to move forward with a 2009 plan to open two new border gates and are preparing to commence construction soon, Customs and Trade Minister Hayati Yazıcı told the press in Ankara on Thursday.
The issue of opening new border gates with Iraq has been on the agenda for more than a decade now. Neither side, however, has made any progress on the issue due to ups and downs in relations between the two neighboring countries. Ankara and Baghdad signed a deal to open two new border gates in Ovaköy and Aktepe in 2009. Yazıcı's comments confirm the location of the two border gates as agreed in 2009. 22.11.13 More
Turkish FM comments on Armenia invitation
Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoglu has said Armenia’s invitation to Turkey to attend the Yerevan meeting of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) member states is an ordinary process.
“This invitation should not be viewed as something special. All members have been invited to the meeting,” Davutoglu said at a joint press conference with his British counterpart William Hague, Milliyet reports.
“We want the relations between Turkey and Armenia to normalize, the problem between Azerbaijan and Armenia to be solved and sustainable peace to be established in the South Caucasus as soon as possible,” he stressed. 21.11.13 More
Patriots in Turkey to be switched for maintenance
A Patriot missile battery stationed in the southeastern province of Gaziantep will be replaced as part of maintenance procedures, the Turkish General Staff said today.
A U.S. ship carrying a new battery arrived at İskenderun Port on Nov. 10, while the new equipment and materials were dispatched to Gaziantep on Nov. 13, the announcement posted on the official website of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) said, noting that the old Patriot missile battery would be sent back to the United States on Dec. 8 for maintenance. 18.11.13 More
Turkish foreign minister to visit Iran in late November
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu is scheduled to pay an official visit to Iran later this month to discuss further expansion of bilateral relations between the two countries.
Davutoglu will travel to Tehran on November 26 at the invitation of his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif. During his two-day visit, the Turkish foreign minister will exchange views on regional and international issues with Iranian officials. 15.11.13 More
Raytheon, Lockheed consider fresh bid for Turkey missile defense
U.S. arms makers Raytheon Co and Lockheed Martin Corp are considering ways to sweeten their offer to build a Patriot missile defense system for Turkey after Ankara said it could still back away from a provisional $3.4 billion deal with China, sources familiar with the issue said November 12.
"There are internal discussions going on about improving the Patriot offer," said one source, who is familiar with the talks but not authorized to speak publicly.
A second source confirmed that preliminary discussions were under way within industry and the U.S. government about how the offer could be adjusted to be more competitive with bids submitted by the Chinese firm, and a European group. Both sources said no decisions had been made and it was important to allow Turkey - a member of NATO - time to make up its mind. Turkey announced in September it had chosen China's FD-2000 long-range air and missile defense system against rival offers from Franco/Italian Eurosam SAMP/T and Raytheon. 13.11.13 More
Turkish MFA denies possibility to open border with Armenia
The Turkish Foreign Ministry denied media reports suggesting that Ankara is trying to obtain Azeri consent for opening the border with Armenia.
According to Trend News, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Levent Gumrukcu refuted the reports. As Turkish embassy in Azerbaijan noted, the Armenian-Turkish talks are held parallel to the Nagorno Karabakh conflict settlement negotiation, with Ankara repeatedly stating the above.
"Turkey closely follows the OSCE Minsk Group’s activities and is ready to take any steps for rapid resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict," the embassy stressed. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu hinted at a possibility of opening the Armenian-Turkish border during a meeting of the parliamentary committee on foreign relations. 08.11.13 More
US gets Turkey’s ‘message’ over Chinese missile choice
It was on Oct. 24 that United States Ambassador to Turkey Francis Ricciardone explicitly stated Washington’s concerns over Turkey’s decision to launch negotiations with a Chinese company for the purchase of a $3.4 billion missile defense systems.
After echoing U.S. and NATO officials’ statements that the Chinese system would not be operable under NATO’s comprehensive anti-ballistic missile defense system, the ambassador announced the start of expert-level talks between Turkey and the U.S. “In order to make sure that the full facts are taken into due consideration, we really have just begun expert discussions with the Government of Turkey. We will keep them very respectful. This will be done in official channels between friends and allies,” he had said. 06.11.13 More
Turkey and Iran share high level of cooperation in intelligence
The intelligence cooperation between Turkey and Iran is in a “very, very good state,” according to the Iranian Ambassador Alireza Bigdeli.
Speaking to the daily Hürriyet, Bigdeli said the intelligence cooperation between the two countries were at a level that should be between strong neighbors and brothers, which bothered Western powers, as well as Israeli authorities.
“Why do they not like it when Turkish and Iranian intelligence agencies cooperate? They expect Turkey to have good cooperation with MOSSAD or CIA. There is that side to it. Turkish and Iranian agencies always have cooperation, and they should have so, and they will have so. It is normal between neighbors to have that, but they treat it with doubt,” Bigdeli said. 04.11.13 More
US Undersecretary of Defense Miller visits Turkey to assess Chinese missile deal
US Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Jim Miller has concluded his visit to Turkey to assess the impact of its plans to co-produce a long-range air and missile defense system with a Chinese firm under US sanctions.A US Embassy official in Ankara declined to give the details of Miller's visit. "The details of Miller's schedule are not available," he told Today's Zaman.
"Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Miller visited Turkey for bilateral consultations on regional security issues, including Syria, the US-Turkish bilateral defense relationship and our partnership in NATO," added the US official. 01.11.13 More
Turkish Armed Forces to recruit civilian political advisers
Within the scope of a new reform in press and public relations within the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), the General Staff will soon recruit civilian political advisers and press secretaries, the chief of General Staff has said.The Vatan daily reported on Thursday that the chief of General Staff, Gen. Necdet Özel, stated that the TSK will no longer conduct public relations through members of the armed forces but will instead employ professional civilian personnel.
Commenting on recruiting political advisers, Özel said: “We are working to keep the army away from all sorts of political movements. We will recruit political advisers. Our prime minister has given us permission to recruit civilian personnel for these positions. “ 31.10.13 More
Davutoğlu to visit Armenia next week
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu announced on Dec. 5 that he would be visiting Armenia next week, marking a first diplomatic push since the protocols between the two countries signed in 2009 which foresaw the development of relations, including a decision on opening the borders, was shelved.
Davutoğlu said he accepted Armenia’s invitation to attend a meeting of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation in Yerevan on Dec. 12.
“Turkey is one of the founding members of the organization. Its headquarters are located in Istanbul, where Armenia, which is a member of the organization, also has a representative. I received the invitation and decided to accept it after consulting the president,” Davutoğlu told reporters during a press conference in Ankara. 06.12.13 More
Turkey losing positive perception in Middle East
Positive perceptions about Turkey in the Middle East have decreased of late, with the sharpest drops registered in Egypt and Syria, according to a poll released yesterday by the Turkey Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV). Despite this loss of popularity, Turkey is still seen as an important power in the region, with 60 percent of those polled supporting a greater regional role for Turkey, according to the study.
Conducted for the fifth time, the TESEV poll shows a considerable drop in Turkey’s popularity over the course of the last three years. While 78 percent of respondents had a positive view of Turkey in 2011, this ratio dropped to 69 percent in 2012, and to 59 percent in 2013. 04.12.13 More
Turkey seeks to develop local engines for UAVs and tank
Scores of Turkish defense programs in recent years have either stalled or delayed due to one component: engine. Wary of engine troubles, Turkey’s defense procurement planners are pondering to give pace to local solutions.
A local armored vehicles maker, Otokar, has developed a prototype for what will become Turkey’s first indigenous new generation battle tank, the Altay. It will be an “entirely Turkish tank.” So will be the Anka, an “entirely Turkish” unmanned aerial vehicle developed by TAI. And so will be the TF-X, a future fighter aircraft Turkey intends to develop. The trouble is, Turks do not have an engine to power any of these Turkish platforms. 26.11.13 More
Turkey launches new bid for light trainer aircraft
Turkey’s defense procurement authorities have pushed the button to launch an international competition for the acquisition of a batch of 52 basic trainer aircrafts, otherwise known as “screeners.”
The Under secretariat for Defense Industries (SSM) has issued a Request for Proposals (RfP) for the contract that foresees the off-the-shelf purchase of a small fleet of screeners. The screeners will replace a fleet of ageing SF 260s used in the Turkish Air Force for preliminary training.
Turkey still operates with nearly 40 SF 260s assembled by TAI in the early 1990s. In addition, for preliminary training purposes the Air Force operates Cessna 172s. Defense industry sources said the screener contract could go up to approximately $75 million. 21.11.13 More
Turkey keen on attack helicopter program despite snags
Turkey remains fully committed to a co-production program with Italian-British AgustaWestland for scores of T-129 attack helicopters despite “minor” technical snags that have delayed acceptance tests for an initial batch of nine choppers.
“It is perfectly normal to have problems during acceptance tests. We remain committed to this program. It is a matter of days or weeks before we find a solution,” a senior defense official said. “We want to have these helicopters in our inventory in perfect condition.”
The official said acceptance tests had been carried out on a double-check basis, both by the end-user, the Land Forces, and the quality check department of the defense procurement agency, the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries (SSM). 14.11.13 More
Turkish captain of ship intercepted by Greek coastguard denies carrying 20,000 Kalashnikovs
The captain of a ship halted by the Greek coastguards and allegedly carrying 20,000 Kalashnikovs has categorically denied claims of having weapons on board while maintaining that the cargo was destined to the Libyan Defense Ministry.
“There are no explosives or weapons on board. I and my crew are going crazy. I learned the claims that the ship was carrying 20,000 Kalashnikovs and explosives from the press. I have sailed for 40 years, and this is the same time that such a thing has happened to me,” the Turkish captain of the Nour M, Hüseyin Yılmaz, told Doğan news agency today. 11.11.13 More
OSCE media freedom representative alarmed by life sentences against journalists in Turkey
Sentencing journalists to life imprisonment for their work will further deteriorate media freedom in Turkey, Dunja Mijatović, OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media has warned, the OSCE official website said.
“The severity of sentences handed down this morning to four journalists in Turkey is alarming,” Mijatović said. “I am in no way trying to challenge the legitimate right of governments to counter terrorism. Terrorism is a transnational threat and it must not be underestimated. However, the fight against terrorism should not be misused to silence provocative or opposing voices in society.” 07.11.13 More
Regional war scenario. NATO-US-Turkey launch Invitex-Eastern Mediterranean military exercise
According to Turkish press reports, Turkey’s High Command hosts NATO’S Invitex military exercise in the Eastern Mediterranean in a clear act of provocation directed against Syria.
The Invitex-Eastern Mediterranean war games have been scheduled from November 4 to 14.
The official release by the TKS High Command suggests a war games scenario involving a regional war, under the assumption that the ongoing US-NATO-Israeli covert war on Syria could lead to military escalation. The countries considered to be a threat to Turkey and NATO are not mentioned. 05.11.13 More
Turkey opens world's first underwater rail link between two continents
Marking the 90th anniversary of the foundation of the Turkish Republic, Turkey on Tuesday opened the world's first underwater rail link between two continents, the Marmaray, connecting Asia and Europe and allowing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to fulfill a project dreamt up by Ottoman sultans more than a century ago.The inauguration ceremony was attended by Turkish and foreign dignitaries including Turkish President Abdullah Gül; Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek; Erdoğan; Minister of Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications Binali Yıldırım; Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud; Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe; Romanian Prime Minister Victor Ponta; İstanbul Governor Hüseyin Avni Mutlu and İstanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş, who all delivered speeches to mark the occasion. A large crowd also attended the ceremony. 30.10.13 More
Turkish intelligence announce recruitment of specialists with knowledge of Hebrew, Arabic, Persian and Armenian
Turkey's National Intelligence Service (MIT) reported that, in response to the announcement of the recruitment specialists with knowledge of Arabic, Persian, Armenian and Hebrew, they received a response from a large number of citizens, according to the portal NEWS.am. The same news circulated in a number of other Armenian Internet resources. 27.08.12 More
PKK simultaneously attacks two garrisons in southeastern Turkey
Suspected militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) launched coordinated attacks on two separate battalion headquarters in the eastern province of Hakkari today.
Militants attacked the Omurlu 2nd border battalion near Omurlu village in Hakkari's Şemdinli province with rocket-propelled grenades (RPG), mortars and assault rifles at around 3 p.m.
The Derecik gendarmerie battalion headquarters, located 10 kilometers away from the Omurlu border battalion, came under fire from assault rifles at the same time. 23.08.12 More
Turkish government new rules on secrecy over spending
While the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) preaches transparency in public administration, a new regulation, which has been adopted in accordance with the Court of Accounts Law no. 6085, is far from achieving transparency. In fact it puts a new veil of secrecy over the properties at the disposal of the state's defense, security and intelligence institutions.
For properties acquired by the Ministry of National Defense, the National Intelligence Organization (MİT), the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries, the Undersecretariat for Public Order and Security, the General Secretariat of the National Security Council, the Gendarmerie General Command, the Coast Guard Command and the General Directorate of Security, a nontransparent auditing process is prescribed in the regulation, which came into effect after being published in the Official Gazette on Wednesday. 17.08.12 More