In a sign of strengthening defense ties, Turkey and Pakistan have both inked a deal on Friday to provide four corvettes to the latter.
At a defense industry fair in Istanbul, the Turkish defence minister said, “We have signed an important agreement regarding the MILGEM project, which Turkey successfully exports abroad, and joint production in Pakistan.”
Isik said that this was the first steps in a goodwill agreement and that the deal would help to make Pakistan’s navy force stronger. The deal is linked to Turkey buying 52 trainer aircraft from Pakistan.
“We have targets with Turkey in the defense area to develop some of our joint initiatives,” said Rana Tanveer, Pakistan’s Defense Production Minister. “We will sign stronger agreements and projects in the future.”
The corvette is equipped with a 76 millimeter naval gun, four 324 mm torpedo tubes, eight launchers for anti-ship missiles and the RIM-116 close-in weapon system.
The corvette can accommodate a Seahawk helicopter on its flight deck and also take in a crew of 93 persons.
“No Turk forgets the help of Pakistani Muslims during the War of Independence, neither today nor tomorrow,” said the Turkish defence minister Isik. “For this reason, the contribution of Turkey to Pakistan’s development will always be given at a high level and will continue to be given,” he added.