ISLAMABAD – Pakistan says it is “deeply concerned” by the imposition of “unilateral” sanctions against Turkey by the United States and is stressing the need for resolving all issues through dialogue.
The Trump administration on Monday announced it was slapping sanctions on Ankara for its decision to purchase the S-400 air defense missile system from Russia.
The sanctions could undermine Islamabad’s defense purchases from Turkey under ongoing deals between the two countries.
“Pakistan remains opposed to imposition of unilateral coercive measures against any country in principle,” said a Foreign Ministry statement issued Wednesday.
Patrol craft, fleet tanker
Turkish companies are said to be working to supply patrol craft and a fleet tanker for the Pakistan navy and upgrade the South Asian nation’s French-designed submarines.
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Ankara also sealed a deal in 2018 to sell a batch of 30 T-129 attack helicopters to Pakistan, but there has been little progress to execute it because the U.S. has not granted export licenses to Turkey.
Later that year, a Turkish shipbuilder announced it had signed a contract to supply four MILGEM stealth corvettes, which are small multi-role warships, to the Pakistani navy.
Construction of the MILGEM warships has already started and Pakistani officials were expecting to get the first ship by the end of 2021.
“The contract entails construction of two corvettes at Turkey while two at Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works,” the Pakistan navy said in a recent statement.
The MILGEM and the T-129 helicopter both use U.S. components.
Turkey’s purchase of Russia’s S-400 missile system in 2017 triggered U.S sanctions, as it violated the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act.
“The people and the government of Pakistan reiterate their strong support for the government and the people of Turkey in their quest for national security, peace and prosperity, and as always, will continue to stand by them towards the achievement of these shared goals,” the Pakistani Foreign Ministry said Wednesday.