Tuesday 13 April 2021 - 12:00

Canada Suspends Military Export Permits for NATO Ally Turkey

Story Code : 926950
Canada Suspends Military Export Permits for NATO Ally Turkey
Shipments had been suspended last October pending an investigation into allegations that Canadian imaging and targeting systems on unmanned drones were used by the Republic of Azerbaijan in clashes with Armenia.

“Following this review, which found credible evidence that Canadian technology exported to Turkey was used in Nagorno-Karabakh, today I am announcing the cancellation of permits that were suspended in the fall of 2020,” Foreign Minister Marc Garneau said in a statement.

“This use was not consistent with Canadian foreign policy, nor end-use assurances given by Turkey,” he said.

The export ban affects 29 permits and applies to a wide variety of military goods and technologies including components for the production of aircraft, software and technical data for flight simulators, satellite equipment, and firearm components.

The value of Canadian exports of weaponry to Turkey was last pegged in 2019 at more than Can$150 million (US$120 million).

Garneau indicated that he spoke earlier with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu, saying future permit “applications related to NATO cooperation programs will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.”

Six weeks of fighting that broke out last September in Nagorno-Karabakh claimed the lives of some 6,000 people and ended in November with a Russian-brokered ceasefire that saw Armenia cede to Baku swathes of territory it had controlled since the 1990s.

Ankara backed its longtime ally the Republic of Azerbaijan in the fighting in the ethnic Armenian province that had broken away from Azerbaijan in a bitterly fought war.