Turkey slams US defense bill as sanctions loom

As lawmakers in Washington debate the impeachment of President Donald Trump, officials in Ankara are weighing how the latest US defense bill will impact Turkey.

In an 86-8 vote, the Senate passed the $738 billion National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Tuesday, sending the legislation to the president, who has expressed support for the bill and is expected to sign it into law.

While the Trump’s fate remains to be determined, political analysts say the NDAA signals bipartisan congressional support for sanctions on Ankara with few signs Capitol Hill will change course in punishing Turkey for its purchase of Russian S-400 missile defense systems, among other points of discord between the longtime NATO allies.

By passing the defense plan, US lawmakers are “foreshadowing what will come, and they demonstrate the strength of the anti-Turkey sentiment in the US Congress,” Ozgur Unluhisarcikli, director of the German Marshall Fund in Ankara, told Al-Monitor.

He added, “I think that in a few weeks, Turkey will be facing real sanctions.”

Read the full story on Al Monitor.