00:59 GMT28 January 2020
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    Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has reportedly said that if the US refuses to supply Turkey with F-35 fighter jets, Ankara will satisfy its need for them in "another place".

    Turkish media reported earlier about a possible purchase by Turkey of Russian Su-57 fighters in the event that the United States refuses to supply its NATO ally with F-35 fighters.

    "Why do we buy S-400 [air defensce systems]? Because we have an urgent need for an air defence system. We are already partners in the F-35 manufacturing programme, we participate in this project, we have paid the necessary amount. There are currently no problems with this. But in a worst case scenario, we will have to satisfy our need in another place, where the best technologies will be offered," Cavusoglu said.    

    READ MORE: US Senator Offers Turkey Choice Between S-400 Deal and Sanctions — Reports

    Mevlut Cavusoglu also noted that Ankara had no intention to hand over the S-400 air defence missile systems it buys from Russia to Qatar or Azerbaijan.  

    "There is no talk about plans to place the S-400 in Qatar or Azerbaijan. We have never discussed such an issue," Cavusoglu said.    

    Turkish media earlier reported on the possible handover by Ankara of S-400 systems to Qatar and Azerbaijan.

    Earlier in April, Cavusoglu argued that Ankara would find a substitute for the F-35 warplanes if the United States refused to deliver them to Turkey in order penalise Ankara for its purchase of Russian S-400 air defence systems.

    Earlier in the month, the Pentagon announced that Washington had halted deliveries and activities with Turkey related to the F-35 fighter jet programme over Ankara's decision to buy Russian S-400 air defence systems.

    Russian-Turkish cooperation on S-400 deliveries has been criticised by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the United States, which have cited security concerns and an inability to integrate S-400 weaponry with NATO's air defence systems.

    Ankara, in its turn, has said that purchase of military equipment is its sovereign affair and ruled out the possibility of abandoning its plans. The first shipment of S-400 air defence systems is expected to be delivered to Ankara in July.    


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    deal, purchase, S-400, F-35, NATO, Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey, United States, Russia
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