Turkey mulls purchase of Russian warplanes

Ankara and Moscow are discussing the deliveries of Russian-made fighter jets to Turkey.

Ankara is in discussion with Moscow over the purchase of Russian fighter jets, Dmitry Shugayev, chief of Russia's Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation said on Tuesday.

Shugayev added that he would hold talks on Wednesday with the head of Turkey's Presidency of Defence Industries Ismail Demir.

Speaking at the MAKS 2019 International Aviation and Space Salon on Tuesday, Shugayev said that they would "move forward with the possible deliveries of the Su-35 or Su-57s as great interest had been shown, but it's too early to talk about contract negotiations."

The Russian official said Ankara and Moscow will also discuss deliveries and cooperation in the area of electronic warfare but added that "there is still no request (from Turkey), consultations should be held," regarding fighter jet purchases.

Shugayev speaking to Sputnik on Wednesday also said Moscow may help Turkey build its own TF-X fifth-generation fighter.

Prospect of Turkey purchasing Russian fighter jets

Russian President Vladimir Putin showed off Russia's advanced stealth fighter jet to his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the air show.

Putin and Erdogan inspected the cockpit of the fifth-generation Su-57 fighter jet, two leaders also toured the Su-35 fighter jet, helicopter displays and an amphibious aircraft.

Interfax news service reported that when President Erdogan inquired during the tour about the purchase and availability of Su-57 Putin said: "You can buy."

Erdogan also said that Turkey wants to continue defence industry cooperation with Russia.

Su-57 is Russia's fifth-generation most advanced multi-role fighter jet.

S-400's arrive

"We are taking positive steps in the defence industry sector with the delivery of the S-400 systems starting," Erdogan said at a news conference alongside Putin as the second batch of the Russian air defence equipment arrived in Ankara on Tuesday.

"With that, in our meetings today we had the opportunity to discuss what steps we could take in various fields within the defence industry and what we could do," he added.

The initial delivery of parts of the S-400s, which Washington claimed was not compatible with North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) defence equipment, arrived in Ankara in July despite threats of possible US sanctions over the purchase.

Washington has not yet enacted embargos, but it did begin last month to remove Turkey from its programme of manufacturing F-35 jets, which Turkey also planned to buy.

In response, Erdogan said Turkey would turn elsewhere for jets to meet its needs.

"In my opinion, a lot has drawn interest from our Turkish partners, not only from a purchase point of view but also from joint production," Putin said at the joint briefing.

Source: TRT World and Agencies