Precision rifles among Turkish Infantry, SF, and LE

Aybars is a Turkish Twitter analyst who very recently has been sharing a number of very detailed photographs concerning precision rifles among Turkish security forces. Primarily these are from the infantry deployed in Syria, however, he has also focused on Special Operations Forces and a special response contingent from the Turkish national police forces. These photographs appear to mostly be within the year and are thus an insight into the armament of the more powerful militaries in the MENA region.

Police Special Operations Department-Polis Özel Harekât (PÖH)

Aybars specifically pointed out that the PÖH is using LMT MWS rifles chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO. By examining the photographs this looks to be true, but without further analysis, at this time we can’t definitively tell. However, the rifle is specifically mentioned on Wikipedia which although not an authoritative source, appears to be up to date in this instance. If this is the case though, it would appear that the Turkish police would prefer a U.S. precision rifle that most likely costs more than a locally made 7.62x51mm designated marksmans rifle, such as the MKEK MPT76. This is perhaps an indication of the insistence on reliability and consistent accuracy over pure cost. We can obviously see these operational requirements through the photographs of the Steyer SSG08 that is also in action.

Another development apart from the precision rifles is that instalment of automated turrets on the PÖH gun trucks. Seeing that the PÖH are most likely operating against the PKK and YPG militants in eastern Turkey, this comes as no surprise that the police forces are militarizing themselves.

Infantry Troops

Turkish Infantry were highlighted by Aybars, carrying imported Accouracy International .338 Lapua Arctic Warfare rifles, and locally produced MKEK 7.62x51mm NATO JNG-90s also known as Bora-12s. In addition, some Barrett .50 BMG M93s were seen in service as well. The majority of these photographs come from inside Syria where Turkish forces are being used in a defensive posture against numerous rebel groups, in addition to on the mountainious borders in the east. Both of these require long range solutions that the .338 Lapua fits very well, over the 7.62x51mm NATO cartridge. Although Turkey does have a domestic anti-material rifle capability, with the MAM-15, it appears that stocks of these either haven’t been ordered, haven’t reached the front, or simply haven’t been photographed yet.

Special Operations Forces

Turkish SF appear to use exclusively U.S. produced small arms, such as the McMillian Tac-50, Knight’s M110, and Barrett M82s.


Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

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  • uisconfruzed

    Giving Turks precision weapons doesn’t seem wise in any way.

  • glenn cheney

    Getting stupider by the day.

    • Timtim

  • Sur Komm

    They are probably shooting at Kurdish girl in the earlier post……….lol

  • Greek Preparedness

    hmmm.. what happened to their Cheytac rifles?

  • hendrik kiliaan

    Giving a regime with a 7th century mindset 20th century precision weapons. The present regime is a fascist Islamist govt. NOT a friend of the West.

    • Jimmy the Cracker of Corn

      I don’t think you have a good understanding of Turkish politics.
      The Turkish government is broken down into factions; current government is 7th century ones, the military is secular modernist. The military operates more or less independently of the ruling government.
      For instance; it was the Turkish Military Intelligence that intercepted the weapons trucks heading to supply ISIS; Which operates independently from the National Intelligence Agency, which were the perpetrators, under the direction of the ruling government.
      Turkish politics are extremely complicated and nuanced. There are friends to the west and there are enemies to the west. It is not wise to paint it with a broad brush.

  • Eric B.

    Turkey has a very robust arms industry and Americans buy a fair amount of Turkish sporting shotguns, plus many American arms manufacturers purchase parts from Turkey.
    I would expect that soon Turkey will be offering their take on a precision bolt action rifle, say in .300 Win mag up to .338 Lapua mag. And it will be well made and at a very reasonable price.