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The United States blocks Turkey's F-35 equipment over the S-400 agreement with Russia



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9, at. 12:23 GMT / Updated

By Mosheh Gains, Abigail Williams and Alexander Smith

WASHINGTON – The United States has blocked Turkey from receiving equipment related to the F-35 jet until its NATO Allies cancel an order of one Russian missile defense system.

Washington is deeply dissatisfied with Turkey's order of Russia's S-400 Triumph, which is among the most advanced and feared air defense systems in the world.

At the same time, Turkey has ordered 30 of the F-35 smugglers and the plans to buy more than 100 in total, according to Turkey, have Lockheed Martin Corp.

already "received" its first two jets, although these are currently stored in Arizona's Luke Air Force Base, where Turkish pilots train with them.

"The United States has been aware that Turkey's Acquisition of the S-400 is unacceptable," said Pentagon spokesman Charles E. Summers Jr. in a statement Monday. "If Turkey acquires S-400, their continued participation in the F-35 program is in jeopardy."

Turkey handed in its first F-35 fighter jet with a ceremony at Lockheed Martin in Forth Worth, Texas, on June 21, 2018. Anadolu Agency / Getty Images file

Turkey agreed to buy The S-400 system from Russia in 2017, an agreement allegedly worth $ 2.5 billion to begin delivery in July.

After months of warnings and ultimatums, the American suspension represents the first major concrete step in trying to force Turkey to rethink. This week marks the alliance's 70th anniversary.

In February, Vice President Mike Pence said that the United States "will not be idiotic while NATO Allies are buying weapons from our opponents."

It is a string of ever-growing relations between Washington and its allies who joined NATO in 1952.


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