13.06.2018 | Turkey warns missile system from Russia "will be used" as tensions with Donald Trump soar
Source - The Daily Express
Mr Erdogan's remarks come after months of contention between Turkey and Nato allies, in particular the US, who see the purchase of a Russian-built missile system as a threat to NATO countries’ defence interoperability.
The Turkish leader said: “We will not just buy the S-400s and place them in a storehouse.
“We will use them if need be.”
He added: “This is a defence system.
“What are we going to do with it if not use this defence system?”
Regarding Turkey’s objective to reduce its dependency on US military supplies, President Erdogan said:“Are we going to depend on the US again?”
“When we have been demanding from them for years, the answer that has been given to us is: The Congress is not allowing.”
“We are tired of this,” he noted.
“In the meantime, Russia has responded to the Turkish request for the S-400 with a pretty alluring offer.
“They said they would even get into a joint production. And with respect to loans, they have offered us pretty good loan terms.”
The US Congress has currently taken up the S-400 case and the US Senate is readying to vote next week on a bill that calls for sanctions for the Russian air missile purchase.
The bill also claims the sale and transfer of the new generation F-35 fighter jets to Turkey, which are expected to arrive in Turkey on June 21, is blocked until congressional committees prepare a plan on removing the country from the F-35 co-production programme.
In reaction to the US move, Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hami Aksoy claimed the bill was “against the spirit of our alliance with the US” and that Ankara would respond if Washington suspended delivery of the fighter jets.
Mr Aksoy noted: “This is not a program managed solely by the US It is a multinational program and we expect everybody to fulfil their obligation."
President Erdogan also responded to the talk around blocking the delivery of the F-35 jets, saying the United States would be obliged to deliver the jets since Turkey had already paid $800 million for them.