ANKARA (Sputnik) – The preparations to deliver Russian S-400 air defence systems to Turkey are ongoing, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday.
“The preparations for S-400 deliveries to our country are underway. There are [specific] dates agreed with Russia, but do not make me name them, this is not correct. Where in Turkey will the air defence systems be deployed? This is being agreed upon by the relevant bodies, [specifically] the Defense Ministry and General Staff. They will make the decision,” Erdogan told reporters.
The Turkish leader pointed out that the air defence systems would be shipped to Turkey by air.
He also expressed hope that the S-400s in Turkey would benefit not only the country but also the entire region.
Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said last week that the deliveries would start in the coming days.
Moscow and Ankara signed a loan agreement for the delivery of S-400 systems in December 2017. Turkish cooperation with Russia on this matter has been strongly criticized by NATO and the United States, which has cited security concerns and the S-400’s incompatibility with NATO’s air defence systems.