Turkish-made drones used as targets in promotion video for Russian jet

Turkish-made armed drones were used as targets in the video announcing the launch of the Russian SU-75 Checkmate warplane at the Dubai Airshow.

Duvar English 

Turkish-made armed drones were used in a promotion video for a Russian jet, possibly in a reference to Ukraine's purchase of the equipment from Ankara. 

During the Dubai Airshow, Russia unveiled its new, fifth-generation SU-75 Checkmate fighter jet, showing how the warplane targets Bayraktar Akıncı armed drones.

Ankara's sale of the drones to Ukraine drew ire from Russia, with Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov last month warning Turkey that the use of the equipment could further aggravate the conflict in Donbass.

Peskov was commenting on the deployment by Ukrainian government forces of a Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2 drone to strike a position in eastern Ukraine controlled by Russian-backed separatists.

"We have really good ties with Turkey, but in this situation, our fears are unfortunately being realized that the deliveries of these types of weapons to the Ukrainian military can potentially destabilize the situation on the line of contact," Peskov told reporters.

Lavrov echoed Peskov's concerns, saying Russia was investigating reports that Ukraine used the Turkish drone.

“This should give pause to those who give airtime to Ukraine's stubborn demands it should be admitted to NATO right away,” he said.

Russia-backed separatists have been fighting government troops in Ukraine's Donbass region since 2014, soon after Russia seized the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine. Kyiv says at least 14,000 people have been killed.

Ukraine has bought sophisticated Turkish drones to boost its military and has struck a deal with Ankara to produce the same drones at a factory close to Kyiv, the capital.

The drone issue is one of several straining ties between Turkey and Russia even though the two countries enjoy close ties in other areas.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, in response, said that while the aircraft was built in Turkey, Turkey should not be responsible for their use in Ukraine.

"If a country has purchased a weapon from us or another country, then that weapon cannot be labeled as Turkish or Russian or Ukrainian. If a state is purchasing this from us, then that product is no longer Turkish," the minister said on Oct. 30 after a meeting with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on the sidelines of the G20 Leaders' Summit in Rome.

"It may have been produced in Turkey but it belongs to Ukraine. Turkey cannot be blamed over this," he told reporters.