Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in an interview with CBS that Turkey will buy new Russian missile defense systems despite American opposition.
The United States urged Turkey not to proceed with the delivery of Russian S-400 missiles and to give up the battery it already owns, even though Ankara is in negotiations with Moscow for the delivery of a second system.
Turkey and Russia are negotiating technology transfer and local manufacturing before a possible purchase of a second system, and Turkey got its first battery in 2019.
The United States has imposed sanctions on the Turkish defense industry for purchasing the systems Russian missiles, claiming that the Russian system could be used to gather information on Lockheed Martin’s F-35 stealth plane. He previously suspended Turkish defense contractors from the international program to help build the F-35.
“Nobody will be in interfere with the type of defense systems we acquire, from which country and at what level, “Erdogan told a CBS News reporter when asked if he planned to purchase another S-400 system.” only to make such decisions “, he added, to which the announcer replied:” It seems so “, to which Erdogan replied:” Of course, of course, yes “.
The interview was taped Tuesday on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York and will be broadcast in full Sunday on CBS.
Alexander Mikheev, head of Russian state arms export company Rosoboronexport, said in August that Turkey was in the final stages of negotiating a new deal for the S-400 systems.
Erdogan will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin next week in the Russian city of Sochi. “Of course, we will reach an important decision in Turkish-Russian relations,” Erdogan said.
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