2020 to see delivery of new Turkish defense products

The Turkish defense industry will deliver new vehicles and systems to the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) in 2020, Turkey’s top defense industry official said on Monday.

Several defense products, including aerial, naval and land systems, will enter Turkish forces’ inventory, Ismail Demir, the head of Turkey’s Defense Industries Presidency, told a press conference in the capital Ankara.

The Bayraktar Akinci Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle, phase 2 combat helicopter Atak, and other types of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) will be delivered, he said.

The Low Altitude Air Defense Missile System Hisar-A and sea missile Atmaca will also enter the inventory, he added.

Turkey’s biggest warship, the multi-purpose Amphibious Assault Ship TCG Anadolu, the test and training ship TCG Ufuk, and new types of boats will also be delivered.

Turkish defense firms will also complete their work on supply ship design and submarine modernization in 2020.

The Turkish Armed Forces will start to use next-generation land vehicles in 2020 such as the Kirpi-2 (new version of a mine-resistant vehicle), mini-armored buses, armored ambulances, and criminal investigation vehicles.

In 2020 Turkey’s Police Directorate will also receive armored trucks and vehicles, including an armored pick-up with a retractable gun.

The first domestically produced 105mm Light Tracked Air Transportable Howitzer Fire Control System (BORAN) will also be delivered to Turkish forces, said Demir.

Turkey’s first air-to-air missile Bozdogan will be delivered after it undergoes test firing.

Several tests for missile systems will also be completed in 2020.

The country will also focus on new systems and products and sign agreements and hold tenders, said Demir.

F-35 issue

Touching on the U.S. F-35 fighter jet program, Demir said: “As an ally, we find it difficult to understand the U.S.’ attitude.”

Following Turkey’s decision to buy Russian S-400 defense systems, the U.S. suspended Turkey from the F-35 program.

“As a partner in the F-35s, we stand behind our commitment. We insist that a biased decision is unlawful,” he stressed.

The U.S. claimed that the Russian S-400 would compromise security on the F-35s, but Turkey said these fears were baseless, and has proposed setting up a commission to clarify the issue.

*Writing and contributions by Gokhan Ergocun from Istanbul