Thu, 22 Apr 2021

ANKARA, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Turkey's decision to procure the Russian-made S-400 defense systems was a "sovereign" move and Ankara would use them whenever needed against a threat, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said on Friday.

"S-400s are a defensive system, which will be used when needed against a threat and danger. It has no harm to anybody if there is not an intended attack against Turkey," the minister said at a meeting in central Anatolian province of Kayseri.

Recalling the U.S. sanctions on the Turkish defense industry's agency over Turkey's purchase of Russian systems, Akar said that imposing restrictions on Ankara, particularly about the F-35s, is "not befitting the spirit of alliance."

Ankara wants to address the U.S. concerns over the deployment of S-400 systems on Turkish territory, but a letter sent by the Turkish government to Washington seeking dialogue on the issue has not been replied to.

Russia and Turkey finalized the S-400 air defense system deal worth about 2.5 billion U.S. dollars in 2017, and the delivery was completed in 2019.

The U.S. responded to Turkey's purchase of the S-400s by suspending Turkey's involvement in the F-35 fighter jet program and targeting Turkey's defense procurement agency with sanctions last December.

More Turkey News

Access More

Sign up for The Turkey News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!