TechThey are blocking Sweden's entry into NATO. They expect something in return

They are blocking Sweden's entry into NATO. They expect something in return

Turkish military fighter jets proceeding to test flights
Turkish military fighter jets proceeding to test flights
Images source: © Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
ed. MT
4:58 PM EDT, October 18, 2023

The Turkish government is intentionally delaying the ratification of Sweden's accession to NATO. According to information provided by the Turkish portal Duvar, the authorities there are waiting for the United States' approval regarding the sale of F-16 fighters.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged to send a ratification request to parliament during the NATO summit in July in Vilnius. Since resuming sessions in early October, the Foreign Affairs Committee, which was to debate Sweden's accession to NATO, has reviewed nearly 60 international agreements. However, none of them concern Stockholm's Euro-Atlantic future.

Turkey is seeking to purchase F-16s

Officially, Turkey expects Sweden to fight more effectively against entities recognized by Ankara as terrorist. As reported by Duvar, officials involved in the matter said that Ankara expects something more. It wants the American State Department to ask Congress for permission to sell F-16 fighter jets to Turkey.

The portal reminded that hopes for a swift approval of the Swedish application were dashed on October 1st, when the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) - one of the organizations at the center of Turkey's dispute with Sweden - admitted to a bomb attack near government buildings in Ankara.

"Discussions about American-Turkish attempts to resolve the situation after the attack have quieted down" - pointed out Duvar.

The F-16 is one of the flagship American fighter jets

Turkey already operates F-16s, having over 200 of these fighters in its fleet. However, the country, which continually strives to be recognized as one of NATO's greatest military powers, does not cease its efforts aimed at further army development.

This time, according to unofficial information, Ankara is aiming for 40 units of F-16 in the Block 70 variant with an APG-83 radar as well as upgrade packages for the units it already owns.

The F-16 is the most popular fighter jet in the world. Its primary weapon is a six-barrel M61 Vulcan 20 mm caliber cannon, but the F-16 can also carry missiles (e.g., AIM-120 AMRAAM, AIM-9 Sidewinder, AGM-65 Maverick, or anti-ship Harpoon) and bombs (CBU-87, CBU-89, GBU-10, GBU-12, Paveway, or JDAM).

The fighter jet manufactured by Lockheed Martin measures nearly 49 feet in length and reaches a maximum speed of 2 Ma (over 1305 mph). It has electronic warfare systems and can operate at an altitude of even about 9.32 miles.

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