Published: Fri, June 14, 2019

Turkey confirms Russian Federation S-400 missile deal, ignores U.S. warning

Turkey confirms Russian Federation S-400 missile deal, ignores U.S. warning

It is unclear whether Turkey and the United States still plan to participate in a joint technical study group to investigate Washington's concerns over Ankara's purchase of the Russian systems.

He noted that Turkey was also a manufacturing partner in the program.

Speaking at a meeting of his AK Party members, Erdogan said Turkey will hold to account anyone who excludes Turkey from the F-35 program.

Turkey on Wednesday criticised a letter from Washington on Ankara's eventual removal from the F-35 fighter jet programme, saying the language used did not suit the spirit of alliance between the two North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.

Turkey and Russian Federation have not always seen eye-to-eye in regards to Syria policy, but the relationship between the two countries appears to have been bolstered by Turkey's controversial decision to purchase an S-400 missile defense system from Russian Federation.

Defense Minister Hulusi Akar spoke by phone with acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Thursday to express his displeasure with a letter Shanahan sent him last week warning Turkey will be expelled from the F-35 program by the end of July if the S-400 contract is fulfilled.

The wider issue behind the S-400 purchase is the realisation in Ankara that Turkey's interests do not align with the US's as they once did.

Training for Turkish pilots on flying the F-35, the development of which Ankara has contributed US$1b to since 2002, was halted this week over the S-400 controversy. Nobody can give an ultimatum to Turkey, " Cavusoglu stated on Thursday, echoing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's earlier comments that the sale was already a done deal.

It appears that Mr Erdogan is hoping to avoid the damaging repercussions of the Russian agreement by appealing to US President Donald Trump personally, first by telephone and later with a meeting at the G20 summit in Japan in two weeks.

Turkey has repeatedly proposed a joint-working group to assess the impact of the S-400 deal, but Washington has not yet taken up the suggestion.

Turkey and USA flags are seen in this picture illustration taken August 25, 2018.

They did not say how long the ceasefire would last.

Ankara had paid $1 billion 250 million for the F-35 jets until today, the president underlined.

The US has also threatened to hit Turkey with sanctions if it goes ahead with the deal.

Like this: