Talks between Russia and Turkey for the purchase of the anti-aircraft S-400 missile systems are continuing at a fast pace. The Rostech company General Manager that manufactures the S-400 system, Sergei Tsemesov, said that Turkey wants to buy the systems, that technical issues have been overcome and that the discussions have reached the stage where financial details have to be agreed.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (Mevlut Cavusoglu) has stated that the talks on the S-400 are moving in a positive context.
The representative of the Turkish presidency Ibrahim Kalin said that Ankara believes that there is no problem of compatibility of this air defence system with those of NATO.
Russian experts say NATO countries such as Greece have Russian weapons, thus this shouldn’t be a problem for Turkey.
The S-400 has a target detection range of 600 km and the missiles have a range of 400 km. Turkey believes that with the purchase of six systems it will cover much of its air defence. Each system comprises up to 8 divisions (battalions) and can control up to 72 launchers, with a maximum of 384 missiles.
In 2016, with the help of these systems, the Russians had blocked out all of Syria and southeastern Turkey which resulted in the grounding of all Turkish fighter jets wanting to fly in the area. In 1997 when the Republic of Cyprus decided to buy the S-300 missile system with a shorter range, Turkey threatened the country with a military intervention and eventually these systems were transported to Crete, Greece.
Meanwhile Turkey with the help of British BAE Systems says that it aims at producing the Turkish fighter by 2023. According to Turkish officials 250 such fighters will be integrated into the fleet of the Turkish airforce by 2030. Ankara has already placed an order with Lockheed Martin for 100 F- 35s and is expected to take delivery of the first two of a batch of 24 F-35s in 2018./ΙΒΝΑ