ANKARA — After a lengthy delay, the Turkish government signed a critical contract for the acquisition of an initial batch of 10 drones that Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) locally designed, developed and will manufacture.

Turkey’s procurement agency, the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries (SSM), announced Tuesday that the contract for the Anka, Turkey’s first indigenous UAV, calls for the deliveries of 10 aircraft and ground stations to start in 2016. SSM did not mention any contract price.

SSM’s chief, Murad Bayar, told Defense News that Turkey would add satellite communications capabilities to the Anka. He said the Anka’s design would evolve over time in consultation with the Air Force about its needs. […]