Turkey announced on Saturday that it would return three unmanned aerial vehicles it had purchased from Israel, and that it would seek payment for damages for what it says was Israel's breach of the sale agreement, according to a report in the Turkish media.
According to Turkish news agency NTV, as quoted by Army Radio, Turkish officials said technical defects had been discovered in the Heron model drones, and that the Israeli government had refused on several occasions to repair them in accordance with their official agreement.
Turkey purchased the drones from Israel Aerospace Industries four years ago in a deal that included a total of 10 such aircraft, at a total cost of $183 million.
According to the NTV report, after Turkey began deploying the aircraft, one reportedly crashed during a mission inside Turkey's borders and two others have been grounded for the past eight months due to what Turkish officials called technical problems.
The report said that IAI insisted it would uphold the agreement entirely and it was not aware of any problems with the drones.