US shelves transfer of frigates to Turkey

Turkish soldiers watch the action in Kobane, as Islamic State takes on the Kurds in the Syrian border town — but refuse to get involved.

The United States has shelved the handover of two leftover frigates to Turkey, as Congress excluded Turkey from a bill seeking permission to transfer vessels to foreign countries, citing Mediterranean tensions.

The U.S. approved the “Naval Transfer Act” bill in late December, approving the transfer of six naval frigates to Mexico and Taiwan, but eliminated Turkey over political concerns.

In the 2012 version of the “Naval Transfer Act,” Turkey was to receive two Oliver Hazard Perry class guided missile frigates, the USS Halyburton and the USS Thach, which are being decommissioned by the U.S. Navy.

However, some members of Congress objected to the transfer of naval frigates to Turkey, mainly citing the county’s strained relations with Israel and Greek Cyprus in the Mediterranean.

“I believe we should hold off on sending powerful warships to Turkey and encourage the government in Ankara to take a less belligerent approach to their neighbors,” Congressman Eliot Engel reportedly said during that debate…


Turkey’s presence in NATO is a leftover from the Cold War and does not correspond to present realities.

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  • Brett_McS

    But the leader of Turkey is Obama’s best buddy! Why wouldn’t they be trusted with warships!?!?!

    • Frau Katze

      Someone must not like Erdogan & Co. Can’t imagine why! 😉

  • winniec

    Turks are hoping the genocide of the Kurds will be accomplished for them by ISIS. The Kurds will never forget that.

    • Frau Katze

      There seems to be a lot of bad feelings between the two groups.

  • simus1

    Old warships take a lot of attention, skillful technical training, and purchase contracts to keep running, even in the beautiful Med and Black Sea. Not to mention all the graft that can be organized at all levels if one has the inclination.

  • Turkey should definitely be excluded from Nato. Having a Moslem country in Nato means that all secrets and weaponry and techniques are known to the enemy beforehand, and moreover the enemy has a say in the way you conduct your defense. It is suicidal, in short.