Turkey does not need Biden's approval over Russian S-400s’ purchase - Erdoğan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced the talks over the purchase of a second batch of S-400s’ with Russia is in continuous progress.
Erdoğan said they don’t know what the U.S. president-elect Biden would say on the issue, but what they do know is that, they don’t need an approval, Birgün newspaper said on Friday.
The outgoing administration of U.S. President Donald Trump imposed sanctions on Turkey under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) in response to Ankara’s acquisition of Russian S-400 air defence missile systems in December.
President Erdoğan said that just like during Trump administration, Ankara cannot take steps regarding to its own defence with permission from any country, in a statement following the Friday prayer in Istanbul, Birgün reported.
As a NATO member, Turkey cannot accept any inducement from other member countries, Erdoğan said and “we will have a meeting with Russia on the issue at the end of the month,” he added.
Stating that the F-35 fighter jets are still not delivered despite the payment has been done, Erdoğan said this is a serious mistake of the U.S. administration to be done to an ally country, Birgün said.
“I hope after Biden takes the office, we could take more positive steps and set all these issues on track,” Erdoğan said.
The National Defence Authorization Act (NDAA), which was approved by the U.S. Congress in December, includes measures blocking Turkey from obtaining F-35 stealth fighters and suspending Turkey’s participation to the programme to build F-35 jets.
Previously, The United States had removed Turkey from the F-35 programme after Turkey accepted delivery for Russian-made S-400 air defence systems in July of 2019. Citing incompatibility and security issues, the United States halted delivery of the F-35s that had already been manufactured for Turkey and put the remaining 100 on hold.
President-elect Joe Biden will take the helm of the U.S. government on Jan. 20. Since Biden's victory was called by the U.S. news networks on Nov. 7th, both leaders have not talked over the phone. Erdogan congratulated Biden's success in the elections on Nov. 10th.