Moscow and Ankara are close to conclude a deal on the delivery of 36 Russian fighter jets Su-35 to Turkey, Daily Sabah newspaper reported on Friday citing its sources.
The Turkish daily also added that in line with the deal at the issue Turkey will also be granted the right for manufacturing parts and components of Russian fighter jets.
“Turkey is close to reaching a deal with Moscow over the purchase of Su-35 fighter jets as well as co-manufacturing some components of the Russian-made jets,” Turkey’s Daily Sabah reported on Friday.
According to the Turkish daily: “Sources added that officials are also discussing Turkey’s possible involvement in the production of some components of the fighter jets, including its precision weapons and ammunition.”
The Russian Su-35 and Su-57 fighter jets were demonstrated to Turkish President Erdogan at the MAKS-2019 aerospace show in Russia in August.
However, the head of Russia’s Federal Service for Military and Technical Cooperation, Dmitry Shugayev, said on Thursday that Russian and Turkish Presidents Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan did not discuss the deliveries of Su-35 and Su-57 fighter jets to Turkey at their meeting in Sochi.
The topic of Turkey’s possible purchase of Russian fighter jets surfaced after the Turkish president Recep visited Moscow on August 27. He showed his interest in Sukhoi combat aircraft when he visited the MAKS-2019 aerospace show outside Moscow with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Erdogan said at that time he did not rule out Turkey’s possible purchase of Russian Su-35 and Su-57 jets instead of US-made F-35. The US White House stated in mid-July that: “Turkey’s decision to purchase Russian S-400 air defense systems renders its continued involvement with the F-35 impossible.”
Turkish President Erdogan said on October 18 that the third stage of the deliveries of S-400 surface-to-air missile systems to Turkey would be implemented in November or December this year.
Russia announced in September 2017 that it had signed a $2.5 billion contract with Turkey on the delivery of S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems to Ankara. Under the contract, Ankara will get a regiment set of S-400 air defense missile systems (two battalions). The deal also envisages partial transfer of production technology to the Turkish side.
Turkey is the first NATO member state to purchase such air-defense missile systems from Russia. The deliveries of S-400 air defense systems to Turkey began on July 12, 2019.
The United States and NATO have been making attempts to prevent Turkey from purchasing Russia’s S-400 missile systems. Washington has warned on many occasions that it may impose sanctions on Turkey, if Ankara presses ahead with the S-400 deal.
The S-400 ‘Triumf’ is the most advanced long-range air defense missile system that went into service in Russia in 2007. It is designed to destroy aircraft, cruise and ballistic missiles, including medium-range missiles, and can also be used against ground installations. The S-400 can engage targets at a distance of 400 km and at an altitude of up to 30 km.