ANKARA, Turkey (BulgarianMilitary.com) – Turkey and the USA have agreed a U.S. team of technical expert to visit Turkey within the next weeks and clarify what the technical risks for the F-35 are in case of usage of the Russian S-400s by Turkey, learned BulgarianMilitary.com
“We constantly listen about potential harms and problems regarding the qualification of the F-35 in case of deployment near a place where S-400s are located. We have always informed our colleagues about the measures that we undertake. Yet, as of the moment, we have never had a team to explain us what the real technical risks in that situation are,” said İsmail Demir – President of Defense Industry Presidency in front of journalists in Ankara on 7th January. “We have told several times to the Americans to come and explain all their concerns, if they consider them serious. We have received a confirmation from the USA that a team will be sent in the next weeks,” completed his comment Demir.
Last year Turkey decided to buy the Russian missile systems S-400. That worried the USA and it repeatedly appealed to the Turkish Government not to undertake that option. The value of the deal between Turkey and the USA is at the amount of U.S. $2.5 billion, but this is not at the root of the problem.
Turkey is a candidate for purchasing the U.S. F-35 stealth fighters. According to the Pentagon the combination between a U.S. F-35 and a Russian S-400 would be harmful for the USA, because it would allow Russia to examine carefully the F-35 and mainly how to cope with them in case of possible threat. That was the main reason the Pentagon to offer in November last year Turkey to be taken out of the list of candidate-purchasers of the stealth aircraft until Turkey did not cancel its plans for purchasing the S-400.
Despite all, Turkey remains firm regarding its decision to purchase Russian S-400s. Demir said, “The system that we will use will have its own radar, own software and own tracking system. This will be an architecture, which will not be integrated with other systems of ours.”
According to İsmail Demir, Turkey needs 4 air defence systems and two of them will be exactly S-400 from Moscow.
“Turkey is a big country and it is a fact that we need more air defence systems,” added Demir.
The other two systems will obviously be the missile system of the USA – Patriot, but with an important note – Turkey does not breach its own principles regarding purchases of military equipment, regardless of its supplier. That view is establishing itself, because Turkey wants to gain control over the software of the U.S. missile systems, as well as control over the friend-enemy identification system.
According to Demir, the negotiations between the two countries are to start, but all desires and facts on behalf of Turkey will be put on the table.
Simultaneously with the purchase of Russian S-400s, negotiations on the purchase of the U.S. Patriot, Turkey holds talks with the French-Italian consortium Eurosam for building antiballistic systems for long distances, which to be integrated with the NATO systems.
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