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ATATURK-XI, Pakistan-Turkey joint military exercise kicks off at Tarbela

The joint military exercise between Pakistani and Turkish special forces has kicked off at the Special Services Group (SSG) Headquarters in Tarbela. The exercise code-named the ATATURK-XI. 

Special forces from both countries will participate in the three weeks long military exercise. 

Turkey-Pakistan defense cooperation:

In ATATURK-XI, Turkish Special Forces and Pakistan Army’s Special Services Group (SSG) will cover counter-terrorism, close quarter battle, cordon and search, Fire and Move Techniques, helicopter rappelling, compound clearance, and Rescue and Free Fall operations. 

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The joint military exercise will further strengthen the bond between the two nations and will also help in adapting to emerging military modernization and cooperation. Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement. 

Turkey and Pakistan relations:

Prime Minister Imran Khan also stated that both countries enjoyed brotherly ties and stood shoulder to shoulder with each other in difficult times. 

Pakistan and Turkey have enjoyed close cooperation and decades-old brotherly relation. 

Both countries have enjoyed close defense relations and stressed the need for the early implementation of the “Pakistan-Turkey Strategic Economic Framework”. 

Army’s special groups from both countries routinely engage in joint military drills to further improve skills and coordination. 

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Pakistan-Turkey defense deals:

Pakistan and Turkey have engaged in a number of defense contracts to enhance their military cooperation and defense ties.

Pakistan Air Force (PAF) inline with Turkey to acquire 30-40 Turkish T-129 multi-role helicopters. These helicopters are twin-engine, used for precision strikes, and have all-weather, day/night operational capabilities. 

In July 2018, Pakistan Navy signed a contract for the procurement of four MILGEM-class ships with Turkey’s state-owned defense firm ASFAT. 

Turkey’s MILGEM class corvettes for Pakistan:

The MILGEM project is a national warship program from Turkey. Managed by the Turkish Navy, the project aims to develop multi-purpose corvettes and frigates that can be deployed for surveillance, reconnaissance, early warning, anti-submarine warfare, and amphibious operations. 

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The Pakistan Navy will get four Jinnah-class frigates from Turkey. Two of these four frigates will be manufactured in Pakistan under the MILGEM project with the help of assistance from Turkey. 

These MILGEM ships are 99 meters long, have a displacement capacity of 2400 tones and a speed of 29 nautical miles. According to The Express Tribune


Turkey and Pakistan are two brother Islamic countries having excellent relations. 

Turkey with its advanced defense industry structure is helping Pakistan to modernize its military. 

Both Armies engage from time to time with each other to enhance their military cooperation, understanding, and skills.


  1. Article published in The Express Tribune
  2. Article published in Dunya News
  3. Information by Wikipedia