New S-400 contract on cards for Turkey in 2020 – Russian official
The head of Russia’s state arms exporter Rosoboronexport has said Russia plans to sign a new contract to supply Turkey with S-400 missile defence systems in 2020, Reuters reported, citing Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
Ankara defied warnings from its NATO allies to take delivery of the Russian-built missile systems in July, and activated the systems for testing on Monday despite the looming threat of U.S. sanctions.
Turkey has already been suspended from the F-35 fighter jet programme over the deal with Moscow. It is lined up for more extensive measures from the United States under a 2017 law designed to prevent third parties from dealing with Russia, but so far President Donald Trump has refrained from imposing sanctions.
With the first battalion of S-400s delivered, Turkey has an option to buy more systems. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said he wants to begin jointly producing the S-400s.
“We hope that in the first half of 2020 we will sign contract documents,” RIA cited Rosoboronexport head Alexander Mikheev as saying.