Erdogan: Turkey to turn elsewhere if U.S. will not sell F-35s
Turkey would turn elsewhere for fighter jets if the United States will not sell it the F-35 jets, the country's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said
Erdogan said he hoped U.S. officials would be "reasonable" on the question of sanctions, adding that Turkey may also reconsider its purchase of advanced Boeing aircraft from the United States.
"Are you not giving us the F-35s? Okay, then excuse us but we will once again have to take measures on that matter as well and we will turn elsewhere," Reuters cited the Turkish leader as saying.
"Even if we’re not getting F-35s, we are buying 100 advanced Boeing aircrafts, the agreement is signed... At the moment, one of the Boeing planes has arrived and we are making the payments, we are good customers. But, if things continue like this, we will have to reconsider this," he stressed.
The U.S. said last week it was removing NATO ally Turkey from the F-35 program, as long threatened, after Ankara purchased and received delivery of Russian S-400 missile defenses that Washington sees as a threat. Rostec state conglomerate said Russia would be ready to supply its SU-35 jets to Turkey if Ankara requested them.