WASHINGTON, DC — Democratic and Republican U.S. lawmakers urged President Joe Biden’s administration not to sell F-16 fighter jets to Turkey and said they were confident Congress would block any such exports.

In a letter to Biden and U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, 11 members of the House of Representatives cited “a profound sense of concern” about recent reports that Turkey may purchase 40 new Lockheed Martin (LMT.N) F-16s and 80 F-16 modernization kits.

The letter dated Oct. 25 stated “Following President (Tayyip) Erdogan’s September announcement that Turkey will purchase an additional tranche of Russian S-400 missile defense systems, we cannot afford to compromise our national security by sending U.S.-manufactured aircraft to a treaty ally which continues to behave like an adversary.”

Earlier this month Turkey had made a request to the United States to buy 40 Lockheed Martin-made F-16 fighter jets and nearly 80 modernization kits for its existing warplanes.

The letter was led by Republican Representative Nicole Malliotakis and Democratic Representative Carolyn Maloney, and co-signed by Representatives Bilirakis, Pappas, Cicilline, Costa, Valadao, Sarbanes, Titus, Fitzpatrick, and Speier.

“While we are confident that Congress will stand together to block any such exports should these plans progress, the United States cannot afford to transfer any advanced military equipment to the government of Turkey at this time,” the letter said.

The full text of the letter is below.

Dear President Biden and Secretary Blinken:

We write with a profound sense of concern in light of recent reports indicating that Turkey may soon purchase 40 new Lockheed Martin F-16 fighter jets and 80 F-16 modernization kits from the United States government. Following President Erdogan’s September announcement that Turkey will purchase an additional tranche of Russian S-400 missile defense systems, we cannot afford to compromise our national security by sending U.S.-manufactured aircraft to a treaty ally which continues to behave like an adversary.

As you know, the Trump Administration officially removed Turkey from its F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program after President Erdogan executed Turkey’s first purchase of Russian S-400 systems, a decision which prevented Turkey from compromising the F-35 system. With the backing of a bipartisan coalition of Members of Congress, this commonsense policy has continued under your Administration.

As Turkey reportedly paid $1.4 billion to join the U.S.-led JSF program, President Erdogan now seeks compensation in the form of cash, the planned F-35 shipment, new F-16 fighter jets, and modernization kits for its existing F-16 fleet. While we are confident that Congress will stand together to block any such exports should these plans progress, the United States cannot afford to transfer any advanced military equipment to the government of Turkey at this time.

As long as President Erdogan advances his expansionist project in the Eastern Mediterranean, Turkey will continue to threaten our national security and the security of our closest allies in the region—Greece, Israel and Cyprus. We urge you to act in our national interest and for the sake of stability in the Eastern Mediterranean by refusing to reinforce Turkey’s aging arsenal of fighter jets, and we look forward to receiving your response.

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