US urges Turkey to stop buying Russian weapons

The US warned Turkey on Friday of further risks to bilateral ties if it buys more weapons from Russia, following US countermeasures against the purchase of the S-400 air defense system.

The statement came after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin earlier this week and discussed increased military cooperation, including on combat aircraft and possibly submarines.

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Turkey, a NATO member, defied US warnings in 2017 to buy the S-400 air defense system, a deal the Western alliance fears will allow Russia to hone its skills in targeting US and Western countries. -European aircraft.

“We have urged Turkey at every level and every opportunity not to retain the S-400 system and to refrain from purchasing additional Russian military equipment,” Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman told reporters when he was told. asked about Erdogan’s journey.

“We continue to make that clear to Turkey and what the consequences will be if they go in that direction,” said Sherman, who was visiting Switzerland.

Sherman reiterated that the S-400 was “not compatible or usable with NATO systems”.

In response, the US expelled Turkey from its state-of-the-art F-35 jet program involving multiple Turkish companies and leaving Ankara expecting as many as 100 aircraft and having Turkish suppliers.

But Sherman stressed that the US valued the relationship with Turkey, pointing to the welcoming of millions of Syrian refugees and offers to help restore Kabul’s international airport.

“Turkey is sometimes a challenge. I’m sure they sometimes find the US a challenge. But they are a valued NATO ally,” Sherman said.

Erdogan said on Thursday that his relationship “didn’t get off to a good start” with US President Joe Biden, who, while out of power, described the Turkish leader as an autocrat and expressed support for the opposition.

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