Turkey to build Bayraktar drone production plant in Ukraine to fight Russian forces - Ambassador

Bayraktar drone Turkey Ukraine

The Turkish company Baykar has bought land in Ukraine and registered it as a legal entity for the purpose of building a Bayraktar drone factory, Ukrainian ambassador to Turkey Vasyl Bodnar said.

In an interview with the newspaper RBK-Ukraina, the ambassador said that the company independently prepared the plan for the construction of the factory and intends to carry it out "because this was the almost personal commitment of the owners of the company, to start this production in Ukraine."

"In the most important part of the models, which will be produced at this factory, Ukrainian-made components will be used. These can be engines, various spare parts, wheels," added Bodnar.

"The factory will be built. Just a week ago, the government approved the bilateral agreement and sent it to the parliament for ratification, the agreement on the construction of the plant itself," the diplomat said.

The agreement on the issue of the construction of the factory was approved by the Ukrainian government and is expected to be ratified by the Ukrainian parliament.

In late June, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that Russian President Vladimir Putin had expressed to him a desire to cooperate on the production of Bayraktar drones. Later the Turkish defence industry announced that the issue of possible cooperation with Russia in this matter was not discussed.

On July 18, the executive director of Baykar, Haluk Bayraktar, in an interview with CNN, stated that he supports Ukraine in its struggle for sovereignty and independence and will never allow its drones to be sold to Russia.

Turkish drones have been used by the Ukrainian military since 2021. After the start of the war, supplies of Turkish armaments began to anger Moscow, leading Turkey to conceal sales of Bayraktars to Kiev.

Baykar's co-owner and technical director, Selçuk Bayraktar, is the son-in-law of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The Turkish drones are "already a legend of our resistance," Bodnar said. Ukraine reportedly had over 20 Baykar-produced drones when the war began, which the company had sold Kyiv in the past two years, according to Middle East Eye.

In total, the country has received 50 armed drones from Baykar since the beginning of the conflict on February 24, according to Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov, three of which were donated by the company to Kyiv.

In early July, Lithuania crowdfunded a Bayraktar TB2 drone to send to Ukraine, Newsweek reported.

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