AHEPA commends the United States’ decision today to impose sanctions on Turkey for its procurement of the Russian S-400 missile defense system, announced Supreme President George G. Horiates.

“Turkey has demonstrated it is an unreliable and dubious NATO ally,” Horiates said. “We commend the United States for holding Turkey accountable under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act for its purchase of the S-400s, which is a clear threat to the United States’ national security. Although overdue, this policy measure by the Trump administration, with bipartisan pressure from Congress, sends a strong and pointed message to Turkey. It is a victory for accountability and the community, and we applaud all groups and individuals for their advocacy.”

In November 2019, Supreme President Horiates wrote to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to request the secretary, under authority designated to him by Executive Order, to impose sanctions on Turkish entities pursuant to Section 231 of CAATSA based upon press accounts that reported Turkey tested the S-400 missile defense system against F-16 aircraft.

  • Horiates’ November 2019 letter followed-up on his October 2019 letter to Secretary Pompeo that inquired about the status of the United States sanctioning Turkey under CAATSA.
  • Also in November 2019, Supreme President Horiates met with key policymakers in foreign policy on Capitol Hill, including Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jim Risch (R-ID) and House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-NY), among others, to work to hold Turkey accountable for its actions.
  • In July 2020, AHEPA asked the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to press Secretary Pompeo on the issue during a committee hearing, which Ranking Member Robert Menendez (D-NJ) correctly did.
  • During the summer, Supreme President Horiates again wrote to Secretary Pompeo, stating the U.S. must impose sanctions on Turkey, which received a response from the State Department.
  • Ahepans mobilized following a September 2020 memo Supreme President Horiates sent a memo and provided a mobilization tool kit to chapters that included talking points on the policy matter. AHEPA also placed an advocacy ad in several Greek American publications.

The Trump administration announcement comes as Congress imposed mandatory sanctions on Turkey for its violation of CAATSA with its passage of the FY2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which AHEPA applauded.

AHEPA supported the bipartisan measures to sanction Turkey that legislators included in the defense bill during the amendment process over the summer.