Baku, Azerbaijan, April 4
By Rufiz Hafizoglu – Trend:
Ankara is negotiating with Washington regarding the supply of Turkey on the F-35 program, Trend reports referring to the Turkish media, citing military sources.
Trainings of Turkish pilots are also continuing under the F-35 program.
Military sources also report that Turkey will receive the first Russian S-400 air defense system in July of this year.
Earlier the Pentagon confirmed halting the delivery of equipment related to the stealthy F-35 fighter aircraft to Turkey due to Ankara’s plans on acquiring Russia’s S-400 missile defense system.
“Pending an unequivocal Turkish decision to forgo delivery of the S-400, deliveries and activities associated with the stand-up of Turkey's F-35 operational capability have been suspended while our dialogue on this important matter continues with Turkey,” Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Mike Andrews, a Defense Department spokesman, said in a statement.
The Pentagon also said that they had taken steps to prevent the supply chain during the creation of the F-35 from stopping because of the withdrawal of Turkey from the program to create the newest aircraft.
Initial reports of negotiations between Russia and Turkey on the supply of S-400 surfaced in November 2016. The signing of a contract was confirmed by the Russian side on September 12, 2017. Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said that the S-400 air defense systems will be deployed from October 2019. The supply of the S-400 air defense systems to Ankara cost $2.5 billion, head of the Rostec state corporation Sergey Chemezov said in December 2017. Turkey is the first country, a NATO member, which will receive the S-400 air defense systems from Russia.
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