American President Donald Trump has signed a bill to block the transfer of F-35 new generation fighter jets to Turkey.
In an earlier report, the Pentagon stated that if Turkey proceeds to buy Russian missile systems, this could mean the country’s expulsion from the F-35 program.
The bill signed by Trump will stay in place until the US Secretary of Defense’s report on Turkey’s purchase of the S–400 missile defense system from Russia is received. The bill requires that the US department provide a detailed description of the plan for sanctions for if and when the Turkish government proceeds with its plan to buy the S-400 systems.
Congress requested that the US Secretary of Defense submit the report before 1 November 2019.
Erdoğan confirms purchase of Russian S-400
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has already confirmed the purchase of the Russian S-400 air defense system from Moscow, holding that they are not going to turn back from the purchase
After a recent visit to the US, the chairman of the Turkish foreign affairs committee, Volkan Bozkir, also spoke to reporters in Ankara about the definite delivery of the S-400 missile defense system from Russia.
“The Russians said they would deliver the S-400s in a short time for a very good price and promising technology transfer,” Bozkir said. “Therefore, we signed the deal for the purchase of S-400 systems as it addressed our needs. The bulk of the payment has already been made while efforts are going ahead for delivery to Turkey.”
S-400 alleged to arrive in Turkey in July 2019
According to Ahval news, the American government will wait until November 2019 to receive the detailed report before making a final decision, while the Russians are planning to send the S-400s to Turkey by July 2019.
The bill also blocks the selling of weapons to Erdoğan’s security guards as they were charged with assault to protesters in Washington DC yet have still not appeared before the court.
The chairman of Turkey’s Defense Industry Directorate also commented, on Wednesday, that the offer by the US government regarding Patriot defense systems is not feasible in its current form.
Talks between the two countries regarding this issue are ongoing.