News ID: 255587
Published: 0135 GMT July 10, 2019

Turkey warns US against harmful steps over Russian S-400s

Turkey warns US against harmful steps over Russian S-400s
Alexander Nemenov/Getty Images

Turkey called on the United States on Wednesday to avoid steps harmful to bilateral relations after the US State Department spokeswoman reiterated Ankara would face “real and negative consequences” for acquiring Russian S-400 defense systems.

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry spokesman said the comments by the State Department’s Morgan Ortagus on Tuesday were not in line with the spirit and content of talks between presidents of the two countries at the G20 summit last month, Reuters reported.

“We invite the US side to avoid taking wrong steps, excluding diplomacy and dialogue, that will harm relations,” spokesman Hami Aksoy said, adding Ankara had still not received a response to its proposal to set up a working group to look into the impact of the S-400 purchase.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said after meeting President Donald Trump in Osaka that the United States did not plan to impose sanctions on Ankara for buying the S-400s, which he said would arrive in the first half of July. Trump said Turkey had not been treated fairly but did not rule out sanctions.

The United States says the S-400s are not compatible with NATO’s defense network and could compromise its Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth fighter jets, an aircraft Turkey is helping to build and planning to buy.

Buying military equipment from Russia leaves Turkey vulnerable to US retribution under a 2017 law known as the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, or CAATSA, the possibility of which has spooked investors and caused a selloff in the lira this year.

Ankara says it is not an enemy of the United States and therefore should not be subject to such sanctions.

Turkey could face expulsion from the F-35 program and other US sanctions if it goes ahead with the S-400 delivery. Washington has already halted training of Turkish pilots in the United States on the aircraft.

 

   
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