Russia's S-400 Supplies to Turkey Will Not Be Affected by Sanctions – Official
The US House of Representatives has proposed a bill which threatens to halt foreign arms sales to Turkey over Ankara’s planned purchase of Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile systems.
Turkish Undersecretary for Defense Industries (SMM) Ismail Demir has told Turkey’s Anadolu News Agency that Russia would supply its S-400 missile systems to Ankara within the agreed time frame.
Commenting on Washington’s possible sanctions against Ankara over its planned purchase of the S-400 systems, Demir underscored that the Turkish government is aware of such reports and that the leaders of Turkey and Russia have made a clear decision which will not be affected by the sanctions.
e also pointed out that SSM activities are carried out in accordance with Turkish government policy and that “we seek to fully comply with this.”
Demir’s remarks came after the US House of Representatives called for an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) in order to require the Pentagon to report on the status of Ankara-Washington ties within 60 days.
The new bill stipulates halting foreign arms sales to Ankara over its intention to buy Russia’s S-400 systems.
“The potential purchase by the Government of Turkey of the S-400 air and missile defense system from the Russian Federation has led to tension in the relationship. These actions could negatively impact common weapons system development between the United States and Turkey,” the bill reads.
In late April, the Assistant Secretary of State, Wess Mitchell, told the House Foreign Affairs Committee that Turkey could face US sanctions if it goes ahead with plans to purchase S-400 missile defense systems from Russia and that it could also affect Ankara’s participation in the F-35 program.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, for his part, underlined that Ankara does not accept the language of sanctions in the discussion of deliveries of Russian S-400 air defense systems with its NATO partners.
Speaking at a joint press conference after talks with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Ankara earlier in April, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stressed that “the S-400 deal is made, and this matter is closed.”
Putin, for his part, pointed out that Moscow and Ankara had agreed to speed up the delivery of the S-400 systems to Turkey.
Russia and Turkey clinched a loan deal on Ankara’s purchase of the S-400 surface-to-air missile systems in December 2017.
The agreement stipulates that Russia will supply Turkey with four batteries of S-400s; the missile launch systems will be maintained by Turkish personnel. The initial delivery of the batteries is scheduled for the first quarter of 2020.