Ignoring NATO , Turkey to Buy Russia’s S-400 Air Defense System
Islam Times - Turkey, a NATO member, is ready to purchase of Russia’s S-400 advanced anti-missile system ignoring concerns of the US-led military alliance.
According to Bloomberg, Ankara and Moscow have reportedly thrashed out the much-talked-over purchase of Russia’s S-400 advanced anti-missile system.
The parties to the deal, which has been in the works since November 2016, have finally agreed on the price of the contract, which should amount to $2.5 billion, the magazine reported Wednesday, citing an anonymous Turkish official. For now, it’s not clear how much time will pass for the systems to be installed on Turkish soil once the deal is finalized, the unnamed official said, noting that Moscow doesn’t have any spare missile systems in stock and will have to embark on their construction first. The systems would be incompatible with NATO equipment stationed in Turkey. Explaining the decision to turn to Moscow, despite attracting NATO’s criticism, the Turkish defense minister said in April that NATO partners had failed to present Turkey with a “financially effective” offer.
The deal signals a turn away from the NATO military alliance that Turkey has been a member for more than six decades.
Turkey has been in NATO since the early years of the Cold War, playing a key role as a frontline state bordering the Soviet Union. But ties with fellow members have been strained in recent years, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pursuing a more assertive and independent foreign policy as conflict engulfed neighboring Iraq and Syria. Tensions with the US mounted over US support for Kurdish militants in Syria that Turkey considers terrorists, and the relationship with the European Union soured as the bloc pushed back against what it sees as Turkey’s increasingly autocratic turn.
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