Turkey guarantees to ensure the safety of information about the S-400 air defense systems it had purchased from Moscow, the head of the Turkish Presidency of Defense Industries, Ismail Demir, has said.
Defense News reported last month that US senator John Thune had proposed an amendment to the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would allow to buy Russian-made S-400 air defense systems from Turkey using the US Army’s missile procurement account. According to the newspaper this move will make it possible to overcome the impasse between Washington and Ankara over Turkey’s participation in a program to produce F-35 Lightning II fifth-generation fighter jets, TASS reports.
"Russia expressed its concern about [the safety] of S-400 data, and Turkey promises to protect it," the Milliyet newspaper quoted the official as saying on Thursday.
Demir also said that from the very start, Ankara has planned to integrate the Russian-made systems into its defense.
Russia said in September 2017 that it had signed a $2.5 bln contract for supplies of its S-400 missile systems with Turkey. The first batch under the contract was delivered to Ankara by air transport in July 2019.
The United States and NATO have been seeking to break down the deal. The White House said in mid-July that "Turkey’s decision to purchase Russian S-400 air defense systems renders its continued involvement with the F-35 impossible."