TURKEY

Turkey's NATO membership 'no obstacle' to S-400 deal

TURKEYS NATO MEMBERSHIP NO OBSTACLE TO S-400 DEAL

Turkey's membership of NATO will not impede its purchase of Russian missile systems, Ankara's ambassador to Moscow, Huseyin Dirioz, said on Friday.

Speaking to Russian media in Moscow, Dirioz answered questions on the S-400 system and said Turkey's NATO membership was not an "obstacle" to acquisition.

"This situation [Turkey's NATO membership] does not constitute a contradiction to Turkey's close relations and interests in other regions," he said.

On July 4, Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Işık speaking on the same issue said: "All technical issues, both by the Russian side and the Turkish side, are over."

Russian presidential aide Vladimir Kozhin had also said on June 29 that Moscow and Ankara had agreed on the delivery of the S-400 air defense system to Turkey adding that Russia saw "no obstacles" to the delivery of the technology, despite Ankara's NATO membership.

The S-400 system was introduced in 2007 and can carry three types of missiles capable of destroying ground and air targets, including ballistic and cruise missiles.

It can track and engage up to 300 targets simultaneously and has an altitude ceiling of 27 kilometers (17 miles).

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