US predator drone_311.
(photo credit: Reuters)
WASHINGTON – Members of the US Congress may have halted a major weapons sale to
Turkey after its government willingly unmasked Israeli spies working in Iran,
according to Taraf, a Turkish daily newspaper.
The sale of 10 Predator
drones was canceled in June 2012, the report claims, after fallout from the
siege of the Mavi Marmara ship in 2010 led to historic lows in the relationship
between Ankara and Jerusalem.
The two nations only began mending
relations in March after US President Barack Obama facilitated a conciliatory
call between Prime Ministers Binyamin Netanyahu and Recep Tayyip Erdogan of
“As a matter of policy, we do not comment on proposed arms sales
or transfers until the completion of Congressional notifications as required
under the Arms Export Control Act,” a State Department official told The
. “We refer you to the Turkish government for details on their
future defense procurement decisions.”
Capitol Hill staff was unable to
confirm this new report on the weapons sale cancellation.
Last week, The
reported that after the Mavi Marmara
intelligence chief Hakan Fidan informed Tehran of Mossad spies working
“We see this media campaign as an attack and there might
be an Israeli effort behind it,” a Turkish intelligence source told local media.
“Especially after the Washington Post story on October 17 and the followups with
Zaman, a Turkish news site, claims that Fidan is
being targeted now by media outlets after Turkey awarded a $4 billion contract
to a Chinese defense firm over its Western counterparts.