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Politics

Pappas Leads Bipartisan Effort to Block F-16 Sales to Turkey

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Chris Pappas (NH-01), member of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues, led 18 of his House colleagues in introducing a bipartisan amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would stop President Biden from selling F-16s to Turkey and put in place needed Congressional oversight to ensure that Turkey does not use F-16s to violate Greece’s sovereignty.

This follows several bipartisan actions led by Pappas to oppose the Biden Administration’s proposal to sell F-16s, F-16 modernization kits, and other advanced weapons and equipment to Turkey despite its possession of the Russian S-400 missile system and continued violation of U.S. law, and its increasingly belligerent rhetoric and aggression towards Greece, America’s reliable, democratic NATO ally.

“I have consistently opposed the sale of F-16s to Turkey and advanced weapons and equipment to upgrade its existing F-16 fleet. It is deeply concerning to me and many in Congress that President Biden supports moving forward with this sale while Turkey has failed to address the issues that led to its ejection from the F-35 program and the imposition of CAATSA sanctions more than three years ago,” said Congressman Pappas. “Turkey’s increasingly belligerent rhetoric and aggression towards Greece, a reliable democratic NATO ally, also cannot be ignored. Turkish F-16s have flown over Greek islands and violated its airspace hundreds of times in recent months, and Turkey has launched a baseless campaign disputing Greece’s sovereignty over its eastern Aegean islands.”

Pappas continued: “We cannot allow the Erdogan government to escape accountability for violating U.S. law and the standards of the NATO alliance. Actions speak louder than words, and without any meaningful change on Turkey’s part, I will continue working to prevent F-16s or any other American-made weapons from falling into Erdogan’s hands. That is why I have introduced this amendment and urge my colleagues in Congress to support this measure.”

Background:

On July 5th, Rep. Pappas, along with members of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues released a statement addressing the Biden Administration’s statement on F-16 sales to Turkey.

In May, Congressman Pappas announced his opposition to the Biden administration’s proposal to sell advanced weapons and equipment to Turkey in light of its continued violation of U.S. law and its increasingly belligerent rhetoric and aggression towards Greece.

In November 2021, Pappas led over 40 House members in a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken opposing US plans to sell Turkey F-16s and demanding information from the State Department following recent reports of a request from Turkey to purchase 40 F-16 fighter jets and dozens of modernization kits for its existing warplanes from the United States.

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