Turkey transports S-400 air protection system for Black Sea checks

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ANKARA, Turkey — The Turkish army transported Oct. 5-6 its first batch of the Russian-made S-400 to the Black Sea port of Sinop, the place the nation plans to check the long-range air protection system’s capabilities, a Turkish army supply confirmed to Defense News.

The S-400 shall be examined on the Sinop check subject, and the town’s civil aviation authorities have banned all flights between Sinop and Unyem, east of the check subject, at an altitude of lower than 25,000 ft.

Officials reported the S-400 shall be fired eastward in the course of the checks.

The batteries have been transported to Sinop on eight-wheel drive army vans. Military officers mentioned a batch of 10 U.Ok.-made Banshee goal drones have been additionally transported to Sinop for the checks.

Turkey first examined the S-400 air protection system on American-made F-16 fighter jets in November. The first batch of the system was delivered to Ankara in July 2019. Turkey and Russia are at the moment negotiating the acquisition of a second batch primarily based on co-production or off-the-shelf buy with expertise switch.

Turkey agreed to the $2.5 billion S-400 acquisition on the finish of 2017. It mentioned it could activate the system in April 2020.

Since the S-400 buy, Washington has suspended Turkish partnership within the American-led, multinational Joint Strike Fighter program that builds the F-35 fighter jet. The U.S. additionally threatened to sanction Turkey if it activated the air protection system.

“When to activate … such a vital air protection system … that may be a matter to not be disclosed to the general public,” said Ismail Demir, Turkey’s chief defense procurement official. “How much of the system has been activated? Such questions do not comply with a country’s geo-strategic deliberations.”

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