Turkey will officially deploy the first batch of Russian S-400 air defence system by December, Turkey’s Undersecretary for Defense Industries Ismail Demir said Friday.
“S-400 systems will be deployed and activated in December,” Demir said.
Istanbul tried to negotiate a deal with the US to purchase Patriot surface-to-air missile systems, however, the deal between US and Turkey fell-off, which prompted Ankara to sign a contract with Moscow for air defence systems.
In September 2017, Russia confirmed that the parties had signed the contract worth $2.5 billion to supply S-400 for Turkey. Under the contract, Ankara will get a regiment set of S-400 air defence missile systems (two battalions).
The deal also envisages a partial transfer of production technology to the Turkish side. The first procurement was delivered on July 12.
The Trump administration has been making strenuous attempts to hinder Turkey from purchasing Russia’s S-400 missile systems. On July 17, the White House press secretary said in a statement that Turkey’s decision to acquire Russian-made S-400 air defence missile systems rendered Ankara’s further participation in the US F-35 fighter-bombers program impossible.