News Desk |
The delivery process of the Russian S-400 hardware to Turkey is ongoing, the country’s Foreign Minister said on Friday (July, 12) as the country received the first batch of Russia’s missile defense system despite opposition from the US.
“We’ve always said regarding the S400s that it’s an agreement that has been finalized and the process continues to progress’” Turkey’s Foreign Minister said, speaking at a joint press conference along with his Swiss counterpart Ignazio Cassis in the Turkish capital Ankara.
Cavusoglu said Turkey is coordinating the transaction and added that the process on plane and personnel permits is ongoing.
“Our National Defense Ministry has already made the necessary statement. There is no problem. The process will continue without any flaws,” he added.
#Turkey officially received its first delivery of #S400 missiles from Russia yesterday possibly triggering sanctions from the United States which says the Russian system is incompatible with the F-35 and #NATO air defense.https://t.co/wlJ771rLqC
— Navisio Global™ 🌎 (@NavisioGlobal) July 12, 2019
Earlier in the day, the National Defense Ministry said on Twitter: “The first batch of equipment of S-400 missile defense system, which is procured to meet Turkey’s air and missile defense need, has started to arrive at Murted Air Base in Ankara as of July 12, 2019.”
Following protracted efforts to purchase an air defense system from the US with no success, Ankara signed the supply contract in April 2017 to purchase the Russian S-400s. The move will anger the US, which has warned that Turkey cannot have both the S-400 anti-aircraft defense system and US F-35 fighter jets. Turkey signed up to buying 100 US F-35s, and has invested heavily in the F-35 program.
However, US defense officials have said they do not want the F-35 jets to be near S-400 systems – because they fear Russian technicians will be able to access the F-35’s vulnerabilities:
- Long-range surveillance radar tracks objects and relays information to command vehicle, which assesses potential targets
- Target is identified and command vehicle orders missile launch
- Launch data are sent to the best placed launch vehicle and it releases surface-to-air missiles
- Engagement radar helps guide missiles towards target
US officials urged Turkey to buy US Patriot missiles, arguing the Russian system would be incompatible with NATO systems and expose the F-35s to possible Russian subterfuge.
Turkey and the US are Nato allies – but Turkey has also been establishing closer links with Russia.
Turkey, however, emphasized the S-400 would not be integrated into NATO systems and would not pose a threat to the alliance.
Turkey has urged the formation of a commission to clarify any technical issues, but the US has failed to respond to this proposal.