Nato summit: Turkey pressures US to sell armed UAVs
- By Defense Systems Staff
- May 23, 2012
President Barack Obama's administration favors selling armed unmanned aerial vehicles to Turkey but faces formidable opposition from Congress on the matter, Turkish president Abdullah Gul told reporters after a short meeting May 21 with Obama on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Chicago, reports the Associated Press.
The United States deployed four Predator UAVs to Turkey in 2011, which the NATO ally has used to gather intelligence for missions against autonomy-seeking Kurdish rebels, the story said.
Gul told Obama that the armed drones are not as lethal as F-16 fighter jets, which Turkey already has in its fleet, or the F-35 fighter jet which Turkey has a role in developing.
Observers believe U.S. lawmakers might oppose the sale of armed Predators on the grounds of Turkey's continuing tense relations with Israel.