Ankara is considering buying the second batch of S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems from Russia – despite US pressure, Turkey’s defence industry chief Ismail Demir said.
“Our work on the second batch of S-400systems continues” he said in an interview with Turkish channel NTV.
Turkey is also working to strengthen its armed forces by developing its own air defense systems, he said.
“This year, deliveries of the Sungur and Hisar A+ systems will begin and work continues on the development of the Siper defense system.”
The head of the Turkish defence industry had said on 11 January that the S-400 air defence systems delivered to Turkey were ready for activation.
Turkey has not noticed the consequences of US sanctions imposed on the S-400 market, Demir said.
“We haven’t noticed any direct effect (from the U.S. sanctions). We will see theeffects of CAATSA [america’s anti-sanctions law], but for now there are no clear consequences and we will wait,” he pointed out.
The Turkish Defence Minister, Houlusi Akar, had misjudged the US position on the purchase of the S-400. “If they think this will deter us from any national decision, then they are wrong,”he said.
On 14 December 2020, the United States announced sanctions on the Presidency of the Turkish Defence Industries, its head, and three other Turkish citizens under the CAATSA Law on the purchase of Russian surface-to-air S-400 missile systems.