Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Ankara does not consider the proposals of other countries to abandon the use of Russian S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems.
Last week, the media reported that the United States offered Turkey an alternative to the Russian S-400 air defense system. It was noted that the proposal was made by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman. According to her, the acquisition of the S-400 creates a problem in NATO. “We have presented an alternative, they know exactly what to do,” she said, without specifying which alternative is being discussed.
“The S-400 will be 100% under our control. We have sent many technicians for training. There will be no Russian military in Turkey. But at the same time, we cannot accept an offer from another country that we do not use the S-400,” Cavusoglu said.
Differences in Ankara’s relations with Washington began in mid-July 2019 over Turkey’s supply of the latest Russian S-400 air defense systems. The American side demanded to abandon the deal and offered to purchase American Patriot systems in return, threatening to delay or cancel the sale of F-35 fighter jets to Turkey, as well as impose sanctions. Ankara refused to make concessions.
In mid-January 2021, the head of the Turkish Defense Ministry, Hulusi Akar, confirmed that the country continues negotiations with Russia on the supply of the second regiment of S-400 air defense systems. Then the Turkish leader Recep Erdogan shared the details of the situation with the purchase of weapons. Later, the US Ambassador to Ankara, David Satterfield, warned the republic against buying a new batch of S-400 systems, saying that this decision “will lead to serious consequences and will cause more effective steps.”