US-TURKEY

State Department raps Ankara over ‘involvement in recent conflicts,’ S-400 purchase

State Department raps Ankara over ‘involvement in recent conflicts,’ S-400 purchase

The US State Department has reiterated its strong objection to Turkey’s acquisition of the Russian S-400 missile defense system and rapped Ankara for its “involvement in some recent conflicts.”

“Turkey is a longstanding NATO ally with whom we share many strategic interests. At the same time, there are areas in which the Department profoundly disagrees. Ankara’s involvement in some recent conflicts is unhelpful and it undermines regional security,” a senior official at the State Department’s Bureau of Legislative Affairs wrote on Monday in a letter of response to a question by Greek-American Congressman Chris Pappas.

“The State Department continues to express its strong disapproval of Ankara’s decision to acquire the S-400s and warns that further purchases of Russian military equipment could lead to additional sanctions,” the letter from senior bureau official Naz Durakoglu said. 

“The government continues to press Turkey to align its foreign policy with US and NATO targets,” it added.

Regarding the US government’s response to a request from Ankara for the purchase of new F-16 fighter jets and upgrades for its fleet, the letter added that “the Department is still early in its review process of the proposed sale,” noting that any sale “would require a Congressional notification if we were to approve it.”