Australia - Turkey Defence Relationship
Australia and Turkey’s Defence relationship is based on strong historical links. It is a relationship borne of the fierce battles of the 1915 Çanakkale campaign (called the Gallipoli campaign in Australia), which remains at the heart of Australia’s national story and is a central episode in Turkey’s national struggle and road to nationhood in the early twentieth century. It is also where the immortal Mustafa Kemal Ataturk first came to prominence.
The 2015 Commemorative events to mark the Centenary of the Çanakkale Battles were a moving tribute to the shared sacrifice of Turkey and Australia in 1915, and reaffirmed the bonds of friendship between our Nations.
The current Defence relationship has therefore developed a unique character, and is one of shared experience and of valued friendship, between one-time foes. The relationship is however not purely historical. It is an active friendship comprising regular senior military officer visits, commemorative events in Turkey and Australia, information exchanges on a range of defence related matters, Defence Material cooperation and shared operational commitments.
Examples of this growing relationship include cooperation on Airborne Early Warning Aircraft and the Joint Strike Fighter; Joint Defence Industry Trade Missions; Training exchanges; and the development of information exchange and military training cooperation protocols. Australia and Turkey have also shared operational experiences, serving abroad, working together within NATO and with coalition partners in Afghanistan and the Gulf of Adan.
Australia works closely with other countries to promote security and stability in our immediate region and globally. Our response to security challenges such as the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, cyber threats, maritime security and weak and failing states is multi-dimensional.
Australia and Turkey hold annual military-to-military talks. The fourth iteration concluded in November 2015, and this mechanism will continue to be a central feature of our relationship for the coming years. Ongoing exchanges at international events are also important with Australian and Turkish Defence Force presence a common theme.
Defence Section - Ankara
The Defence Section is a component of the Australian Embassy in Ankara. The Defence Section explains and promotes: Australia’s Defence interests and relationships with accredited countries; Defence policies and national security interests; strategic interests shared with accredited countries; Australia’s contribution to the protection of those shared interests; and the development of cooperative Defence activities.
The Defence Attache is the principle accredited representative of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) in Turkey, and is resident in Ankara. The Defence Attache is dual accredited to Turkey and Israel.
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The Australian Defence Force is an equal opportunity employer who values the service of men and women. As at 1 April 2015, 15.4 per cent (8,823) of the ADF permanent workforce are female.