Turkey arms Poroshenko for a new war in the Donbass

How will Kremlin respond to provocative actions of Erdogan’s ally?

The Ukrainian state-owned company Ukrspetsexport and the Turkish company Baykar Makina signed an agreement on the purchase of Turkish strike unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) Bayraktar TB2 for the needs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. About this on Saturday, January 12, said on his page on Facebook President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko.


According to him, this corresponds to the “strategic course of Ukraine in NATO” and contributes to the integration of the Ukrainian military-industrial complex into the world arms market.


– These newest attack drones of operational-tactical level, in addition to high-tech characteristics, can also be equipped with modern high-precision rocket weapons for the destruction of armored vehicles, engineering and fortifications, as well as naval targets, – he wrote.


According to Poroshenko, the procurement agreement was signed after an agreement with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He also added that this document is part of measures to expand military-technical cooperation between Kiev and Ankara.


According to the Turkish agency Anadolu, the agreement concluded between Baykar Makina and Ukrspetseksport provides for the delivery of six UAVs within a year, as well as components, service and personnel training.


On the Baykar Makina website, the technical characteristics of the UAVs are given: the length of the vehicle is 6.5 meters, the wingspan is 12 meters, the range is 150 kilometers, the cruising speed is 130 kilometers per hour.


Recall that at the end of last year, it became known about Kiev’s intention to purchase 20 types of weapons, which the Ukrainian army does not yet possess. Military spending in 2019 is projected at 5.4 percent of GDP.


I wonder how this information will react in Moscow. Russia has repeatedly warned against the supply of arms to Ukraine, as this may lead to an escalation of the conflict in the Donbas. As the Kremlin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov has repeatedly stressed, the supply of weapons to Ukraine from outside will not contribute to the settlement and implementation of the Minsk agreements.


Is Turkey afraid to spoil relations with Russia in this way, which clearly claims to be a strategic partner more than a poor Ukraine? And why do she arms Ukraine? Nothing personal, just business?


  • The United States asked in the person of John Bolton, – says Andrei Manoilo, a professor at Moscow State University, a member of the Scientific Council at the Security Council of the Russian Federation.

– Well, how can you refuse?


– Is Ankara not afraid to spoil relations with Moscow in this way? Or nothing personal – only business?


  • Fears, of course, but very little. The fact is that two important questions are being addressed right now: will Russia take active steps to curb Turkey’s advance in the Manbij area in Syria (or simply watch what is happening) and whether Russia agrees to the Turkish version of the Karl murder – “this is all Gulen , or not. If it rests, the shock drones will go to Ukraine with all the consequences. If you agree with everything, then the contract can be withdrawn.


– Why is it Ukraine? Do they have little American weapons? Or is there more political PR here: they say, everybody sells weapons to us, which means everyone supports?


– For Ukraine, the presence of shock drone-is the ability to quickly destroy the entire line of defense of the militia of the Donbass republics. Because there is nothing to knock them down. In Kiev, they sleep and see the day when a swarm of UAVs will be in their hands.


– Earlier, the head of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council, Alexander Turchinov, said that Trump’s decision to lift the ban on the sale of lethal weapons to Kiev was in fact a breakthrough, after which he announced serious projects with international partners. Is it so? Is everyone going to sell weapons to Ukraine now?


– Everything could have been rushed, but Ukraine is bankrupt, it has nothing to pay for. And to give weapons of fools there. Therefore, only those who will receive cash in return will start supplying weapons. There will be a few.


– Should Moscow respond to this? And How?


– It is necessary to respond to this. I don’t know how. Obviously, this is not a linear, but a multi-way batch, in which pipelines are exchanged for drones, Gulen – for Syria, and so on. Make it so that if the Turkish drone drones really fall into the hands of the Ukrainians, so that they immediately resell them to the Syrian Kurds from the VTS, and blame everything on Gülen. That’s when we’ll see who has more eggs in the package.


– The trade deal between Ankara and Kiev was accomplished under pressure from Washington, – said Fyodor Biryukov, a member of the Bureau of the Presidium of the Rodina Party, director of the Freedom Institute.


– The USA, being the leader of NATO, has an impact on Turkey, especially strong in connection with the purchase of Russian S-400 complexes. Ankara, as usual, leads a double and even triple play, there is nothing new here. As there is no strategic component in the Turkish-Ukrainian deal. However, the Ukrainian side, of course, will try to squeeze out a maximum of PR senses from the situation, but perhaps Russia will pay the closest attention to this, in view of well-known circumstances.


In general, considering the issue realistically, nothing fundamentally new happens. Just an informational occasion, which, in fact, should not be inflated and included in our federal agenda. In this case, it is just a business due to certain geopolitical circumstances.


– So what? We do not respond?


– Moscow in this case does not make sense to react to this situation in a tough way, it should be taken into consideration. In any case, this episode will have no effect on our relations with Turkey. Ukraine, no matter how it relates to the current Kiev regime, still remains a subject of international trade, including in the field of armaments. And you just have to take it easy. Russia leads its affairs with Turkey, and it is necessary to focus attention on them. And Washington, of course, will continue to try to manipulate Ankara. The big game continues, and Russia also has its trumps.


– Turkey is trying not to let Ukraine go far away in connection with its tasks in the Black Sea, – says political analyst Igor Ryabov, head of the Krymsky Project expert group.


– Maintains an even relationship with the Poroshenko regime for diplomatic purposes. Plus, there is a painful question for the Turks of the Crimean Tatars. We also respond is not necessarily committed.


– Shock drone this serious? Or is this just the beginning? How far can Turkish cooperation with Kiev go in a military matter?


– I think the party of several Turkish UAVs is just ridiculous. President Poroshenko himself announces this purchase. This contract can only draw on the championship of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on aircraft modeling. Ukraine is now a superpower, definitely. And since in this case there is so much aplomb, it means there will be no continuation. In any case, Turkey has no reason to start seriously arming Ukraine.


– For Turkey, is it just a business or a desire to prove something to someone?


– For Turkey, this is a gesture of symbolic courtesy to Ukraine, no more.


– As far as Ukraine in general is interested in Turkey politically and economically?


– Ukraine in recent years, in every way trying to play the Turkish card through the Crimean Tatar issue. Financial support to the Mejlis replaced in Russia goes to Ukraine. This is also an element of interstate relations. Plus, Ukraine is definitely involved in the operations of the Americans in the Syrian sector. Turkey can not ignore this factor. But, I repeat, all this is done in the most conditional mode.


– After Trump lifted the ban on the supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine, is it worth expecting an increase in supplies from around the world?


  • No special supplies have happened since. And if it happens, then it is not a problem even for the DNR army, which has the means to eliminate any type of weapon. Notice how the Turks warned in advance about the type of weapons. Showing that it carries no particular threat to anyone.