Erdogan: Turkey to get S-400 missile system by July

Erdogan: Turkey to get S-400 missile system by July

The deliveries of Russia’s S-400 missile systems to Turkey may be carried out by this July or earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said shortly after his visit to Moscow.

According to him, there is a great international interest in Ankara’s purchase of the S-400. "Our ministers are frequently asked whether Turkey has changed its decision. We tell them 'this is a job completed, all is ready.' The delivery of the S-400 missile defense system was supposed to be in July, it may be done earlier," the Turkish president noted.

Erdogan commented on Washington’s criticism against Ankara over the S-400 deal. "We are here as one of the strongest military powers of NATO. When such criticism is being made, how come nobody mentions this side of Turkey? I mean, why shouldn't one of NATO's strongest militaries have a strong air defense systems?" Daily Sabah cited him as saying.

The Turkish leader also responded to an ultimatum by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who had called on Turkey to make a choice between partnership with NATO and the S-400 deal. "NATO's general-secretary is not Pence. Stoltenberg had already said the last word with his remarks and he did that a few times," the Turkish president stressed.