Turkey has purchased Russia’s advanced S-400 air defence missile system for over $2 billion, Russia’s state-run defence company Rostec said yesterday.
Sergey Chemezov, the CEO of Rostec, confirmed to Russia’s official TASS news agency that “the cost of the S-400 deal with Turkey is worth more than $2 billion,” after months of speculation since the deal was signed in September.
The deal has drawn criticism from Turkey’s NATO allies, and the US is particularly incensed that the country is seeking defence systems other than their own. NATO claims that the Russian-made air defence system is not compatible with its own ballistic missile defence system, and will not be integrated with the alliance’s technology.
A week ago, NATO gave a warning to Turkey, the member with the second largest army in the alliance, about the consequences of purchasing the S-400 system. “The principle of sovereignty obviously exists in acquisition of defence equipment,” said the chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, General Petr Pavel, “but the same way that nations are sovereign in making their decision, they are also sovereign in facing the consequences of that decision,” he told reporters at a Defence Writers Group breakfast.
Turkey has sought to build its own domestic air defence system in recent years, in a bid to be less dependent on external players, and looks to further modernise the Turkish Armed Forces
The S-400 system, Russia’s latest and most advanced long-range missile system, possesses the capacity to carry three types of missiles and can track and hit over 300 targets simultaneously. It has had a presence in Syria since it was deployed to the Russian military bases there.