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UK, Spain Suspend Arms Exports to Turkey Over Syria Offensive

UK, Spain Suspend Arms Exports to Turkey Over Syria Offensive

LONDON - Britain and Spain joined other major powers Tuesday in suspending military exports to Turkey following its incursion into northeastern Syria. Britain is carrying out  a review of arms sales to its NATO ally, its chief diplomat said

"We will keep our defence exports to Turkey under very careful and continual review," Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said in a statement to parliament. "No further export licences to Turkey for items which might be used in military operations in Syria will be granted while we conduct that review."

Spain, a major arms exporter to Turkey, similarly announced a halt to sales of military material. Spain's Socialist government asked Turkey to "put an end to this military operation", saying it "endangered regional stability", increased the number of refugees and threatened Syria's territorial integrity.

"In coordination with its European Union partners, Spain will deny new export licences for military equipment that can be used in the operation in Syria," a foreign ministry statement said. "Turkey's legitimate security concerns must be addressed and resolved by political and diplomatic means, not by military actions."

Spain was Turkey's fifth biggest arms supplier between 2008 and 2018 after the United States, South Korea, Germany and Italy, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

The announcements from London and Madrid follow similar moves by key European and NATO allies, including Germany — one of Ankara's main arms suppliers — and France.

 

Aliqismet BADALOV,
“Khalq qazeti”

16 October 2019 12:31 -

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