The administration of President Biden has reportedly asked the House of Representatives to approve the upgrade of Turkey’s F-16 fighter jet fleet according to an article by the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday. A potential deal may include high-tech missiles, radar systems, and electronic warfare suites for the fighters.
According to the article, Biden’s administration may be using this deal, sent to Congress last month by the Turkish government, to establish the level of support such a deal would enjoy with the body that had been very critical of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, particularly after the purchase of the Russian S-400 missile defense system.
The hope is that such a deal could help bring Turkey and the West closer, assuaging fears that the country could drift towards Russia or China.
However, despite reports of this quiet encouragement by the administration, many in the United States Congress remain critical. They cite the continued relations between Ankara and Moscow as a significant hurdle, while also focusing on the issue of human rights with the conviction of Osman Kavala working against this rapprochement.