Delivery of second S-400 system might start in late 2020 - Turkish defence official

The shipment of Turkey’s second batch of S-400 air defence systems purchased from Russia may start at the end of 2020, as Ankara and Moscow consider joint production and technology sharing for the second system, Hürriyet newspaper quoted Turkey’s top defence industry official as saying on Thursday. 

Delivery of the first batch of the S-400 missile defence system started last month. Turkey is to receive two more shipments of S-400 parts in coming months. 

“The second shipment (of the second S-400 system) might start at the end of next year,” said İsmail Demir, the chairman of Turkey's Defence Industry Directorate, during an interview with TGRT television. 

“In the second system, there is a series of steps including co-production, technology transfer and software integration, and the achievements of the first system should be integrated with the second system” he said.

Demir said Turkey would have full control of its S-400 surface-to-air missile systems.

Following the start of the S-400 shipments, Washington halted the delivery of 100 F-35 stealth fighter jets over concerns that the Russian made missile systems could access sensitive information on the new generation U.S.-built jets.

Demir said the U.S. authorities had not provided any technical explanation on why the S-400 systems and F-35 jets could not exist in the same place.

Turkey still wishes to buy F-35 jets, according to Demir. But if the United States “do not leave any other way, we will try other doors. We have made our studies on this issue. Turkey will not be left defenceless,” he said.