17:46 GMT21 January 2021
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    Fikri Isik, the Turkish defense minister said that the decision of the Austrian parliament calling for the termination of the arms supply to Turkey can become motivation for Ankara to develop local defense industry and domestic armament.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The decision of the Austrian parliament calling for the termination of the arms supply to Turkey is unfortunate, but at the same, it could motivate Turkey to develop domestic defense industry, the Turkish defense minister said on Friday.

    On Thursday, the National Council of Austria unanimously supported an initiative calling on the government to ban arms sales to Turkey. The decision came the same day as the European Parliament voted to suspend membership negotiations with Turkey.

    "This is a very unfortunate decision. Turkey has never defended the escalation of tensions and conflicts Our main principle is the peace in the country, the peace in the world, I am sure that such sanctions will become even greater motivation for us to develop our own defense industry and domestic armament," Fikri Isik was quoted by the NTV television channel as saying.

    The Austrian parliament's decision, which is not legally binding, calls on the authorities to stop issuing permits for the export of arms and ammunition to Turkey. According to the document, the curtailment of human rights had been observed in Turkey while the supplied weapons could be used by the authorities against the opposition.


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    Fikri Isık, Turkey, Austria
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