US keeps persuading Turkey not to buy Russian missile systems
Washington keeps persuading Turkey not to buy air and missile defense systems from Russia, US Department of Defense Spokesperson Johnny Michael said, commenting on the recent Turkish-Russian deal on S-400 systems, TASS reports.
"We have relayed our concerns to Turkish officials regarding the purchase of the S-400," the Pentagon spokesman said. "A NATO interoperable missile defense system remains the best option to defend Turkey from the full range of threats in its region."
"We have an open dialogue on this issue, and have emphasized the importance of maintaining NATO interoperability on any major defense systems procurements," the US official continued.
He said that Turkey and Russia have "robust and significant" defense-trade and military-sales relationship.
"Turkey continues to pursue anti-missile systems from NATO Allies, including the U.S. Patriot System, for its broader, long-term air defense needs. The United States is committed to expediting the delivery of equipment purchased by Turkey, when possible," the Pentagon spokesman said.