Turkey, Russia prioritize S-400 air defense missile systems deal
04 April, 2018, 01:35 | Author: Gregory Stephens
A few minutes after the arrival of Russian president, Vladimir Putin, in Ankara, along with his Turkish homologue Recep Tayyip Erdogan, they set the foundations of Turkey's first nuclear power station in Akkuyu, through a teleconference from Ankara.
Turkey is also set to purchase Russia's long-range S-400 missile defense system - a deal that is raising eyebrows among some of Turkey's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.
Turkey and Russia have made a decision to shorten the duration of the S-400 air defense missile systems' delivery, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on April 3, speaking in the presidential complex in Ankara in a joint press conference held with his Turkish counterpart. The sides finalised the deal for Ankara to purchase S-400 missiles, despite NATO's concerns in December 2017, and Russian Federation has been building Turkey's first nuclear power plant.
Moscow and Ankara are in close cooperation to eliminate terror in Syria as well as to end the 7 year-long conflict in the war-torn country in a short period of time, Erdogan added.
"I wish that all our meetings benefit the whole of our region", Erdogan said at a meeting of the High-Level Cooperation Council, which takes place in Ankara under the chairmanship of the Presidents of Russian Federation and Turkey.
Akkuyu's investment is the largest foreign investment in Turkey as it exceeds United States dollars 20 billion. "Turkey is a highly developed state in terms of technology and economics, but this is a new stage in the development of the Turkish economy", Putin said.
"In the name of God!" "The Akkuyu NPP will allow us to meet 10% of the entire requirement for electric power", Erdogan stressed.
Last month, sources familiar with the matter said Akkuyu was likely to miss its 2023 target start-up date, but Rosatom, which is looking for local partners to take a 49 percent stake in the project, said it is committed to the timetable.
Russian Federation and Turkey are also building the TurkStream gas pipeline under the Black Sea that will allow Moscow to pump gas to Europe avoiding Ukraine and increase Turkey's importance as a transit hub.
But Erdogan indicated that Turkey was in no mood to listen to criticism from the West over the purchase.
But Putin refused to discuss the issue saying "these are exclusively commercial questions" rather than political ones.
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