Presidency of Defence Industries head Ismail Demir, who faces sanctions, says Washington's move will perhaps prompt development at faster speed as Turkish Defence Minister Akar confirms the decision will hurt US-Turkey alliance.

Defence Industry President İsmail Demir gave a speech at the Eskisehir Chamber of Industry on 14 March 2019.
Defence Industry President İsmail Demir gave a speech at the Eskisehir Chamber of Industry on 14 March 2019. (AA)

Turkey's defence industry announced recent US sanctions will not hinder its development plans.

The head of the country's Defense Industries Presidency (SSB) Ismail Demir said on Tuesday: "The development of the domestic industry will continue, perhaps even faster. In a sense, this [sanctions] will be a flare and a warning." 

The US Treasury Department on Monday imposed sanctions on Turkey over its purchase of the Russian S-400 missile defence system.

The sanctions, under the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, avoided targeting Turkey's economy generally, focusing on its arms procurement and development body SSB, its chairman Demir, his deputy and two officials responsible for air defence systems.

READ MORE: Turkey: US sanctions over Russian S-400 missile system a 'grave mistake'

Values of alliance 'shaken'

Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said on Tuesday that Washington's decision has deeply shaken the core values of the alliance between the two countries. 

“We condemn this decision, which does not comply with the alliance, current military or political realities,” Hulusi Akar told Anadolu Agency.

“This sanction decision has shaken all values of the alliance between our countries,” Akar stressed.

Highlighting the air and missile threats that Turkey faces, he said the country is taking all measures to protect itself and its people.

“Obviously, sanctions on a NATO member country will not only undermine the spirit of alliance but will deeply undermine trust among allies,” he said.

NATO chief urges 'positive solution'

Meanwhile, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg has urged Ankara and Washington to find a "positive solution."

"I urge all NATO allies and Turkey and other allies to look into whether there are ways to find a positive solution," Jens Stoltenberg told a joint news conference with Prime Minister of Montenegro Zdravko Krivokapic in Brussels on Tuesday. 

"I regret that we are in a situation where NATO allies have to impose sanctions on each other," Stoltenberg said. 

Sanctions unite Turkey

Turkey's parliament has showed unity in condemning US sanctions over its procurement of Russian defence systems, and said the country will not hesitate to protect itself in the face of threats.

In a joint declaration, four of parliament's five major political parties said US relations should be based on mutual respect and said the sanctions over the S-400 Russian defences are "not in line with the spirit of alliance".

"We call on the United States to turn back from this grave mistake immediately," the declaration said. Turkey will not "turn back in the face of threats or sanctions".

The main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and the Iyi Party, both usually staunch rivals of President Tayyip Erdogan's governing AK Party, signed the declaration, as did the AK Party and its nationalist MHP allies.

Pro-PKK terror group party HDP, did not sign.

Shaken but not severed

"We expect this not to affect our relationships too much," Demir told reporters following budget deliberations in parliament.

Demir added that Ankara has relations with the US in several fields.

He said both sides aim to continue these relations.

In April 2017, when its protracted efforts to buy an air defence system from the US proved fruitless, Turkey signed a contract with Russia to acquire the S-400 shield.

US officials have voiced opposition to their deployment, claiming they would be incompatible with NATO systems and would expose next-generation F-35 jets to possible Russian subterfuge.

Turkey, however, stressed that the S-400 would not be integrated into NATO systems, and posed no threat to the alliance or its armaments.

READ MORE: Turkey dismisses EU's sanction threat as bias and illegal

Source: TRTWorld and agencies