BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:30 P.M.) – A Turkish military expert has commented on an official request from the Greek Ministry of National Defense to Washington to purchase American F-35 fifth-generation fighters.
The retired Major General in the Turkish Armed Forces, Najat Esslin, commented on Greece’s request to acquire an F-35 from Washington, and said in his interview to Sputnik:
“If Greece buys the F-35, Turkey will use the S-400 against it.”
In this regard, Esslin continued, saying: “Athens is rushing to buy American fighters.”
Speaking about Washington’s possible reaction to this request from Greece, Esslin stressed that:
“Turkey is a very important player for the United States and NATO as a whole in terms of its geopolitical position and real capabilities. Washington’s full and unconditional support for Greece in the Aegean and Eastern Mediterranean regions is not in U.S. interests. The United States must take into account the strategic balance of power between Turkey and Greece.”
Meanwhile, according to the Greek newspaper Ekathimerini, the Ministry of Defense is looking to reinforce the Hellenic Air Force with U.S. F-35 fighter jets, as well as French-made Rafale fighter jets, along with unmanned aerial vehicles and unmanned response systems, possibly within the year 2021.
According to the newspaper, Athens hopes to purchase 18 to 24 F-35s, even if they are previously used.
According to their informed sources, Greek Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos already has a proposal ready for the United States to acquire six fifth-generation F-35 fighters, with a few flying hours, which could be delivered to Greece within 2021.