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December 2, 2019 10:02 am

Turkey Says New Russian Missile Deal to Happen Before Too Long: RIA

avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

A view shows a new S-400 ‘Triumph’ surface-to-air missile system after its deployment at a military base outside the town of Gvardeysk near Kaliningrad, Russia, March 11, 2019. Photo: Reuters / Vitaly Nevar / File.

Turkey’s presidential administration has said that the purchase date for more S-400 missile systems from Russia is just a technicality and that it thinks a deal will happen before too long, the RIA news agency reported on Monday.

Moscow hopes to seal a deal to supply Turkey with more S-400 missile systems in the first half of next year, the head of Russian state arms exporter Rosoboronexport said last month.

Such a move could further strain ties between Turkey and the United States, which has suspended Ankara from the F-35 stealth fighter jet program, in which it was a producer and buyer, to punish it for buying S-400 batteries earlier this year.

“The date of the purchase of a second set of S-400s is just a technical question. I think it will happen before too long,” RIA cited a security and foreign affairs official in the Turkish presidential administration as saying.

Rosoboronexport’s Alexander Mikheev told RIA news agency on Nov. 26 that Moscow and Ankara were actively discussing Ankara taking up an option in the original contract for it to receive more S-400 systems, with talks focused on financial questions.

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