Ankara’s resilience against US pressure over the purchase of the S-400 air defense systems remains rock solid, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan clarified on Wednesday, stressing that Turkey is a sovereign nation which has the right to choose its trade partners and defense suppliers.
Ankara is not a slave to an America in which Washington decides which weapons system Turkey can purchase, the country’s president proclaimed, stressing its deployment of Russia’s S-400 systems will proceed as planned.
Claiming the need to protect NATO interoperability and to conceal the technical characteristics of US hardware from the Russians, and specifically with the Lockheed Martin F-35’s.
Washington has been using coercive diplomacy against Ankara, trying to force it to back down from its S-400 deal.
The USA insists Turkey should instead spend $3.5 billion on inferior US Patriot missiles, an offer Ankara has repeatedly turned down.
The S-400 remains “a problem to all of our aircraft, but specifically the F-35,” General Curtis Scaparrotti told the Senate Armed Services Committee, arguing that the USA should stop the stealth fighter transfer to Turkey.
Earlier this week a Pentagon spokesman warned of “grave consequences” and of “broader implications”unless Turkey cancels the purchase.
RT. com / ABC Flash Point News 2019.