Canada might loosen Turkey arms embargo, Ottawa’s former military envoy says

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 A former high-ranking security expert says Canada may loosen its arms-export restrictions against Turkey as that country moves to strengthen ties with its Western peers.

At last week’s NATO summit in Lithuania, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan struck a deal to support Sweden’s attempt to join the military alliance after blocking the move for months.

During the summit, media reports quoting unnamed Turkish officials claimed Canada reopened talks on the arms embargo in response, which the Prime Minister’s Office will neither confirm nor deny.

Canada halted new export permits to Turkey in October 2019 after a military incursion into Syria, and then downgraded those restrictions in April 2020 for six months.

But in October that year, Canada again suspended export permits due to credible evidence that Canadian military goods and technology had been used in conflicts.

Chris Kilford, a former senior Canadian military attaché in Turkey, says he expects Ottawa will lift the arms embargo with some stipulations, as a way to help relations with a major ally.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 18, 2023.

Source: Toronto Star

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