Erdogan: S-400s will be fully deployed in April 2020

Turkish President: S-400s are the strongest defense system against those who want to attack our country.

Elad Benari ,

Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Reuters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that the Russian S-400 missile defense system, parts of which have been delivered to Turkey over the past four days, would be fully deployed in April 2020, Reuters reports.

Speaking at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport on the third anniversary of 2016's attempted coup, Erdogan said eight planes had already brought parts of the Russian system and more were coming, as he had repeatedly promised.

"With God's permission, they will have been installed in their sites by April 2020," he told the crowd.

"The S-400s are the strongest defense system against those who want to attack our country. God willing, we are doing this as a joint investment with Russia, and will continue to do so," he added.

Turkey on Friday received the first batch of Russia's S-400 missile defense system, despite US warnings not to purchase them.

Washington says the S-400 poses a threat to the Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 stealthy fighters, which Turkey also plans to buy.

The US also believes the S-400 sale is part of Russian efforts to disrupt the alliance amid Western concern over Erdogan's burgeoning relationship with Putin.

Turkish officials insist that the deal to purchase the S-400 does not affect the security of the US and have repeatedly stressed that they will go ahead with the deal despite Washington’s objections.

On Saturday, officials said that President Donald Trump’s team has settled on a sanctions package to punish Turkey over the S-400 deal.

On Sunday, Erdogan said that Trump has the authority to waive sanctions on Turkey for its purchase of Russian air defense systems and should find a "middle ground" in the dispute.



top