Russian S-400s Will be Delivered to Turkey Next Month - Erdogan

Remigio Civitarese
Giugno 13, 2019

"These regard first of all the completion of the contract to supply S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems to Turkey", Putin said before suggesting that there were other military projects in the pipeline.

U.S. Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan welcomes Turkish Minister of Defense Hulusi Akar to the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., February 22, 2019.

Tensions between the U.S. and Turkey have reached a fever pitch in recent months with Turkey set to begin receiving the advanced S-400 Russian surface-to-air missile defence system which Washington said will jeopardise Turkey's role in the US F-35 fighter jet program and could trigger congressional sanctions.

US officials advised Turkey to buy the US Patriot missile system rather than the S-400s from Moscow, arguing the Russian system would be incompatible with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation systems and expose the F-35 to possible Russian subterfuge. "I hope these systems will be delivered to our country next month", Erdogan said. It is working on a response to be sent in the coming days, according to Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar.

Erdogan's statement follows an earlier remark made by acting US Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan that Ankara was notified about a potential ban on obtaining the F-35 fighter jets it had already purchased if it proceeded with the S-400 deal.

The actions are the latest in a series of moves by the try to remove Turkey from the F-35 program amid a standoff with its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally over the purchase of Russian S-400 system.

Turkey's plan to buy the Russian air defense system has been a cause of tension within the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation military alliance, which both the United States and Turkey belong to.

But Erdogan said Wednesday that his government would hold to account anyone who excluded Turkey from the F-35 program.

Turkey has consistently contested the Greek Cypriot administration's unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, saying Turkish Cypriots also have rights to the resources in the area and Ankara has a right to hydrocarbon drilling activities in the region.

Erdogan also said he wanted to talk about the issue on the phone with the United States, before he meets President Donald Trump in Osaka, Japan, at the end of this month.

"We may suddenly come one night", he added referring to previous military operations to Syria.

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