Russia and Turkey: Friends or Foes?

Turkey-US fighter jets carry out NATO patrols over Iceland, Poland

Jul. 8, 2021
Turkish and U.S. fighter jets are carrying out air patrols this week to guard the skies over Poland and Iceland as part of NATO air policing duties, a bloc spokesperson said Wednesday.
“We thank our Allies the United States and Turkey for contributing to NATO’s air policing missions,” Oana Lungescu said in a statement.
Stressing that air patrols help the alliance keep its skies safe and secure around the clock, Lungescu said it is a clear example of alliance solidarity in action, “demonstrating that NATO has the capabilities and the resolve to protect all Allies.”
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Four Turkish F-16s land in Poland to join NATO Air Policing mission

Jul. 6, 2021
Four Turkish Air Force F-16s landed at the northern Polish Malbork air base on Tuesday to join NATO’s Air Policing mission in the region.
An 80-person Turkish Air Force subdivision will service the aircraft at Malbork until mid-September.
This is the second time the Turkish Air Force has provided jets for the mission and their first time deployed to Malbork.
It is the third Turkish Air Force subdivision in the region within the framework of the Air Policing mission, alongside Spanish Air Force representatives in Siauliai, Lithuania, and the Italian Air Force in Amari, Estonia
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Why did Turkey participate in the Sea Breeze 2021 naval exercise on a low key?

By Elif İlhamoğlu
Jul 9, 2021
The Sea Breeze 2021 naval exercise, which the United States and the NATO alliance have launched on June 28th off the coasts of Ukraine despite Russian reactions, is still continuing. The exercise, planned to end on July 11th, is continuing to create higher tensions in the Black Sea.
The United States has emphasized that the exercise would “demonstrate that the Black Sea is a part of international waters”, while Russia has stated that “such a provocation, which is seeking to turn the Black Sea to a NATO lake, will not go unanswered”. The western media has perceived this exercise as a ‘challenge to Russia’, while the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that “The scale and clearly aggressive nature of the Sea Breeze exercises in no way corresponds to the real tasks of security in the Black Sea region”, claiming that the main purpose of this exercise was to supply Ukraine with weapons and military equipment.
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MFA: Turkey to support Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration

Jun 21, 2021
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey has stated that his country will support Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration in all possible ways.
This was discussed at a meeting between Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu during the Antalya Diplomacy Forum, Ukrinform reports with reference to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.
“Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu assured that Turkey would continue to support Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration in all possible ways. The ministers discussed the possibilities of enhanced cooperation between the Ukrainian and Turkish navies which will help implement NATO standards in the Ukrainian Navy, increase their defense capabilities and interoperability with NATO member states, and generally strengthen cooperation between the countries for security in the Black Sea,” the statement reads.
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U.S. bombers, ally fighter aircraft complete mission over Black Sea

Jun 15, 2021
Two U.S. Air Force B-52H Stratofortress aircraft from the 2nd Bomb Wing, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, completed a mission with the Hellenic air force over the Aegean Sea and the Turkish air force in the international airspace over the Black Sea on June 14, 2021.
The first strategic bomber aircraft conducted operations with F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft from the Hellenic air force over the Aegean Sea. Turkish F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft escorted the second U.S. bomber through Turkish airspace and then into the international airspace over and around the Black Sea.
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Turkey sends F-16s to Poland for NATO operations against Russia

May 25 2021
Turkey will send its F-16 fighters to Poland to cooperate with the Polish military and NATO operations to protect countries around Russia and Belarus. Turkish President Tayyip Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced this in connection with today’s upcoming state visit of Polish President Andrzej Duda to Istanbul.
Erdogan’s comment connected Poland’s future purchase of 24 Turkish attacking Bayraktar TB2 drones, which we have informed you about. Poland becomes the first foreign NATO member to buy Turkish drones.
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Poland Confirms Procurement of Armed Bayraktar TB2 UAVs from Turkey

May 22, 2021
We have negotiated an agreement that would cover procurement of 4 UCAV packages – 24 aircraft armed with anti-tank guided missiles
, stated head of the Polish Ministry of Defence Mariusz Błaszczak, referring to the acquisition of the Bayraktar TB2 drones in his interview for Polskie Radio 24. Błaszczak added that Turkish F-16 jets would be deployed to Malbork soon, within the framework of Air Policing duties.
The Head of the MoD added that Poland expects the first UCAV set of 6 aircraft to be delivered next year. He noted that the agreement also covers the logistics and training package, as well as a maintenance offset agreement, with the offset delegated to a “military enterprise”. Błaszczak stated that no Polish company makes UAVs in the class of TB2. Should a similar product be offered by the Polish military industry, the MoD would consider procurement as such.
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