Erdogan heralds S-400 missile deal with Russian Federation

Russian Federation says that S-400 missiles are created to protect vital political, economic, administrative and military facilities from airstrikes, and are considered of the most advanced systems in the air- and anti-missiles defense.

"They have gone insane because we made a deal for S-400s".

The total worth of the S-400 missile system supply deal between Russian Federation and Turkey is more than 2 billion dollars, Komersant newspaper reported citing an anonymous source in the military.

Citing Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, TASS and Hurriyet report that a deposit in the $2,5bn deal has already been paid.

"We make the decisions about our own independence ourselves, we are obliged to take safety and security measures in order to defend our country", he said. "So at the top of the Turkish air force defense architecture, you're going to have Russians".

Moscow also confirmed the accord, with Vladimir Kozhin, Putin's adviser for military and technical cooperation, saying: "The contract has been signed and is being prepared for implementation".

Turkey, whose relations with its allies have frayed in recent months, said it opted for the S-400 because Western companies had offered no "financially effective" alternative.

This is the largest deal that Turkey signs with a country from outside North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. Ankara considers YPG as linked to the Kurdish PKK group.

Turkey's need for an air missile defense system once again became urgent with the start of the civil war in Syria, a country which has a sizeable ballistic missile stockpile able to strike a large portion of Turkey's territory, in addition to biological and chemical weapons.

"Turkey is a key NATO Ally, and we are committed to our strong defense partnership", Defense Department spokesperson Johnny Michael said in an email. As the dispute unfolded, the United States in 2015 withdrew its Patriot missiles from Turkey's border with Syria after a two-year deployment.

  • Jon Douglas