Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis stated at a briefing that Turkey needs to explain its intention to acquire Russian S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems.
"Turkey is a NATO ally, and one of the cornerstone things we like to have with any of our allies…. is the ability to have equipment that interoperates," said Davis. "The reports of the S-400, and Turkey's purchase of that…Turkey would need to explain that for itself," he added.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in turn, said that he sees no reason for concern from the US in connection with the negotiations around the delivery of the S-400. "Why should this be a concern? Each country should take certain measures to ensure its security. On those sides where these measures can be ensured, steps are taken. How many times have we talked with America, but it did not work out? So whether we like it or not, we began to make plans concerning the S-400. Our relevant departments are negotiating, and this step will be taken," the Turkish leader said at a press conference in Ankara.
The S-400 Triumph anti-aircraft missile system is designed for highly effective destruction of strategic and tactical aircraft, ballistic missiles, hypersonic targets and other means of air attack in conditions of electronic and other types of counter combat. To date, Russia has signed a contract for the delivery of S-400 Triumph systems with China, and is also negotiating on this issue with Turkey and India.
Sergey Chemezov, the CEO of Rostec concern, said earlier that technical issues regarding the contract for the delivery of S-400 systems to Ankara have been resolved, and only administrative ones remain.
The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US Armed Forces, General Joseph Dunford, has expressed concerns about the possible supply of the S-400 to Turkey.