Ankara’s purchase of Russia’s S-400 missile defense system is a done deal, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday, despite Washington’s efforts to persuade Turkey to buy the US Patriot system instead.
Turkey’s push to buy the systems has raised questions among NATO allies over their compatibility with alliance equipment as well as concerns over the burgeoning relationship between Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
US and NATO officials have warned Ankara that the Russian system cannot be integrated into the NATO air and missile defense system and that purchasing the S-400 system would jeopardize Turkey’s purchase of Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets and possibly result in US sanctions.
But Ankara has said the two defense systems are not seen as an alternative for the other.
The S-400 deal is one of the key symbols of the warm relationship enjoyed by Erdogan and Putin, who have also worked closely on finding a political solution to the Syrian war.