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US Sanctions Turkey's Presidency of Defense Industries Over Ties to Russia's Defense, Intel Sector

Sputnik News

Daria Bedenko. Sputnik International
21:13 GMT 05.04.2021(updated 21:46 GMT 05.04.2021)

Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB), along with four officials working within it, including chief Ismail Demir, was sanctioned by the US under its Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) on Monday.

The United States has sanctioned Turkey's SSB and its four officials for ties with Russian defense and intelligence sector, the State Department said on Monday.

According to the State Department's notice, the official document is to be published on Tuesday.

"The Secretary of State [Antony Blinken] has... selected certain sanctions to be imposed upon SSB and Ismail Demir, SSB's president; Faruk Yigit, SSB's vice president; Serhat Gencoglu, SSB's Head of the Department of Air Defense and Space; and Mustafa Alper Deniz, Program Manager for SSB's Regional Air Defense Systems Directorate, pursuant to CAATSA," the notice said.

State Secretary Anthony Blinken asserted that SSB "has knowingly engaged in a significant transaction with a person that is part of, or operates for or on behalf of, the defense or intelligence sectors of the Government of the Russian Federation."

The US has not been very welcoming of any defense or intelligence cooperation between Turkey and Russia. In particular, the move by Ankara to acquire Russian-made air defense systems S-400 has drawn criticism from Washington, with the US threatening to impose sanctions on Turkey over the decision.

© Sputnik

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