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Turkey Eyes Latest Variant of Eurofighter Typhoon (Tranche 4)

Turkey aims to acquire 40 of the latest variants of the Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets, namely the Tranche 4 model equipped with the AESA radar "CAPTOR E", which is touted as a modern European fighter aircraft capable of serving until the year 2060.

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(DEFENCE SECURITY ASIA) — Turkey has initiated discussions to acquire 40 Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets after its request for the latest variant of the F-16 Block 70 fighter aircraft may not be accommodated by the United States.

Turkey’s Defense Minister, Yasar Guler, stated that Turkey is in negotiations with Britain and Spain for the purchase of Typhoon fighter jets, although Germany has expressed reluctance to sell them to Ankara.

As a NATO member, Turkey is reportedly seeking to acquire the latest variant of the Typhoon fighter aircraft, known as Tranche 4, equipped with the “CAPTOR E” AESA radar, considered a modern European fighter capable of serving until 2060.

Germany is said to have ordered 38 Typhoon Tranche 4 fighter jets.

In 2021, Turkey submitted a request to the United States to purchase 40 F-16 Block 70 fighter jets and 80 F-16 aircraft modernization kits, with an estimated value of $20 billion (RM80 billion).

Storm Shadow

While President Joe Biden supported Turkey’s request, some members of the U.S. Congress opposed Ankara’s proposal due to Turkey’s human rights record and its reluctance to support Sweden’s NATO membership.

The Turkish Air Force expressed the need for new fighter jets, initially favoring the F-16.

However, considering the potential lack of a positive response, the Eurofighter Typhoon emerged as the best alternative to the F-16.

There is confidence that Britain will assist in convincing Germany to agree to Turkey’s proposal.

Germany’s hesitancy to approve the sale of Typhoon fighter jets to Turkey is reportedly related to Turkey’s strong criticism of Israel’s military actions in the Gaza Strip.

German’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz responded by hindering Turkey’s desire to purchase 40 Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets.

In the aftermath of Israel’s intense and brutal attacks on Gaza, which have resulted in the loss of over 14,000 lives, especially among children and women, Turkey condemned Tel Aviv, labelling it a “terrorist state.”

F-16 Turki
Turkish F-16

 

Turkey also refrained from designating Hamas as a terrorist organization, contrary to the stance of other European countries and NATO members.

Germany, a staunch supporter of Israel, disapproves of Turkey’s actions, leading to doubts about approving the sale of Typhoon fighter jets.

Despite clear communication from Turkey to Germany that alternative options are available, Chancellor Scholz is expected not to permit the sale of Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan explicitly stated that Germany is not the only country producing fighter jets, emphasizing that Turkey has alternatives if its request for Typhoon fighter jets is rejected.

The Eurofighter Typhoon is produced by a European consortium based in the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, and Spain, requiring approval from all four countries.

KAAN
“Kaan”

 

Turkey aims to replace its aging F-4 Phantom fighter jets promptly, especially after being excluded from the development program of the fifth-generation F-35 fighter jets by the United States.

Ankara was removed from the F-35 program due to its acquisition of the Russian-made S-400 “Triumf” air defense system.

To meet the needs for modern fighter aircraft, Turkey has initiated the development of its fifth-generation fighter, named “KAAN,” expected to be operational around 2028-2029. — DSA

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