01:19 GMT +312 December 2019
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    Recharging an S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft weapon system during the combat duty drills of the surface to air-misile regiment in the Moscow Region.

    Paris: Purchase of Russia’s S-400 Air Defense Systems Sovereign Choice of Ankara

    © Sputnik / Grigoriy Sisoev
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    French Foreign Ministry spokeswoman says that an agreement between Moscow and Ankara on deliveries of Russia’s S-400 air defense systems is the sovereign choice of Turkey which should not be commented on.

    PARIS (Sputnik) — France considers it inappropriate to comment on the contract between Moscow and Ankara on deliveries of Russia’s S-400 air defense systems to Turkey, as it was a decision made by the country alone, French Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Agnes Romatet-Espagne said on Wednesday.

    On Tuesday, Moscow and Ankara reached an agreement on the delivery of S-400 systems to Turkey, according to the Russian Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSMTC). Earlier on the same day, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Ankara had made its first payment for the air defense systems.

    "The acquisition of military equipment by Turkey is its sovereign choice, which the members of the Alliance [NATO] should not comment on," Romatet-Espagne told a briefing.

    Meanwhile, spokesman of the German Foreign Ministry Martin Schaefer stressed that Berlin does not consider the matter to be of much concern.

    "We are not taking this very seriously now, we were aware about the talks and preliminary agreements between Turkey and Russia on the S-400 deliveries," the spokesman said, adding that it would be more appropriate for NATO allies to "work with the same systems and structures."

    Unlike Berlin and Paris, the Pentagon conveyed its concerns to Turkish authorities about the purchase of S-400 systems, stressing that a NATO inter-operable missile defense system remained "the best option to defend Turkey from the full range of threats in its region." In response, Erdogan criticized Washington's reaction to the matter, stressing that Ankara had been taking independent measures and will continue to do so.


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