Turkish President Erdoğan: S-400 Triumf will Go Online by April 2020
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Turkish President Erdoğan: S-400 Triumf will Go Online by April 2020

Turkish President Erdoğan: S-400 Triumf will Go Online by April 2020

On March 6, 2020, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has confirmed the Russian S-400 Triumf air defense systems will go operationally online in April 2020. The confirmation came during his meeting with the journalists in the wake of Moscow talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.

"They [S-400] already belong to us. In April, we will begin deploying them," Erdoğan said, according to Yeni Safak daily.

The Turkish President underscored that Ankara does not reject the US-made Patriot air defense systems.

"I said yesterday and will repeat again that we have told the Americans: ‘if you ship us the Patriot systems, we will buy them, too’," Erdogan pointed out.

The Timeline of the Deal

During the 2009 International Defence Industry Fair (IDEF 2009) in Istanbul, Turkey expressed an interest in acquiring the S-400 air defense system.

In September 2017, both the countries signed an agreement worth US$ 2.5 billion for the delivery of the S-400 air defense system units.

In early March 2019, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said that the process of deploying Russian advanced S-400 air defense missile systems in Turkey would begin in October and the Turkish Air Force was studying the areas - "where it would be better to deploy them."

The first shipments have begun on July 12, 2019. Both the US and NATO actively oppose the deal.

On July 17, 2019, the White House spokesperson announced that Turkish decision to procure S-400 makes its participation in the F-35 program impossible.

About S-400 Triumf

It is an anti-aircraft weapon system developed in the 1990s by Russia's Almaz-Antey Corp. as an upgrade of the S-300 family. It has been in service with the Russian Armed Forces since 2007. The S-400 uses four missiles to fill its performance envelope: the very-long-range 40N6 (400 km/248.5 mi), the long-range 48N6 (250 km 155 mi), the medium-range 9M96E2 (120 km/74.5 mi) and the short-range 9M96E (40 km/26 mi). 

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