United States examines all possible sanctions on Turkey over S-400 deal - diplomat

The White House sought to downplay the effects of the decision on the US relationship with Turkey

The White House sought to downplay the effects of the decision on the US relationship with Turkey

If Turkey is removed, as expected, the U.S. will have to find alternative suppliers.

Washington is cutting Ankara out of the F-35 program, because the stealth fighter "cannot coexist" alongside the Russian air defense systems now being delivered to Turkey, the White House announced. Washington is concerned that deploying the S-400 with the F-35 would allow Russian Federation to gain too much inside information of the stealth system. The first shipment of a Russian missile defense system has arrived in Turkey, the Turkish Defense Ministry said Friday, moving the country closer to possible US sanctions and a new standoff with Washington.

President Trump is now weighing in on the issue, saying "it's not fair" that Lockheed Martin could lose out on billions of dollars because the manufacturer will not be allowed to follow through on the sale of more than a hundred of the fighter jets to Turkey.

It is unclear whether the USA will impose economic sanctions on Turkey for its decision. "We will work forward at this point to unwind the relationship", she said.

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The White House, however, sought to downplay the effects of the decision on the USA relationship with Turkey, saying that Washington still "greatly values" its strategic relationship with Ankara.

"It's a very tough situation that they're in and it's a very tough situation that we've been placed in".

She added that the United States "still greatly values" its strategic relationship with Ankara and would "continue to cooperate with Turkey extensively, mindful of constraints due to the presence of the S-400 system in Turkey".

"Turkey remains a close North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally, and our military-to-military relationship remains strong", said Ellen Lord, under secretary of defense overseeing acquisitions. The White House, State Department and Pentagon have stressed that the system is not compatible with the American F-35 fighter jet, and officials have publicly said they believe the S-400 could compromise the F-35 program itself.

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"This administration has made multiple offers to move Turkey to the front of the line to receive the U.S. Patriot air defence system", it said.

Turkey initially sought in 2009 to buy the US Patriot missile defence system, and a $7.8bn deal was tentatively approved by the Obama administration.

"A contract has been signed on October 5, 2018 for delivery of S-400 system from Russian Federation".

This week, Erdogan hailed the first S-400 delivery and said the next step was to jointly produce the system.

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"Turkey is very good with us, very good", Mr. Trump said, citing the release of an American pastor detained in Turkey a year ago.

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