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Turkey, US Set up Working Group on S-400, Foreign Minister Cavusoglu Says

12/30/2020

Last week, Turkey's Defence Minister Hulusi Akar told the broadcaster NTV that Anakara expects the US to urgently revise its "mistaken" decision to slap sanctions over the purchase of S-400s.

 

Turkey and the United States have created a joint working group in connection with Ankara's purchase of Russian S-400 air defence systems, and the countries are already engaged in technical negotiations, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.

 

"We have created a joint working group with the US on the S-400, we have already started technical negotiations", Cavusoglu said at a press conference.

The US imposed sanctions earlier this month on Turkey's Presidency of Defence Industries (SSB) and its head, Ismail Demir, as well as on three other individuals related to the defence industry presidency.

 

The sanctions banned all US exports to the SSB and froze the assets of the designated persons.

 

Following the move, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the sanctions but noted that they won't stop Ankara from pursuing attempts to defend its rights.

 

In 2017, Ankara signed an agreement with Moscow preferring Russia's defence systems to the US Patriot system after the US and Turkey failed to reach a consensus over technology transfers. In 2019, Turkey received several S-400 battalions worth $2.5 billion.

 

The United States has expressed concern over the S-400's interoperability with NATO defence systems and a potential security threat. Turkey has stated that there would be no issue of integration with NATO systems and no threat to the alliance's security.

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