Russia to extend loan to Turkey for partial financing of missile defense system

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Russia will extend a loan to Turkey for partial financing of Ankara’s purchase of an S-400 missile defense system, Russian presidential aide for military and technical cooperation Vladimir Kozhin said on Thursday, the Tass news agency reported.

“All the issues have been resolved, and I discussed this while literally entering this hall. The contract will be entering the implementation stage in the coming days. A part of the contract will be paid for by the Turkish side and the other part will be covered by a loan granted by the Russian side,” the presidential aide said, adding, “Deliveries will begin in late 2019 or early 2020.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced in September that Ankara had signed a deal with Russia to buy an S-400 missile defense system despite opposition from NATO allies. Erdoğan also criticized Turkey’s NATO allies for reacting negatively to Turkey’s decision to purchase the system from Russia and said they had gone crazy.

Pentagon spokesman Johnny Michael said the US had relayed its concerns to Turkish officials over the purchase. Michael said that a NATO inter-operable missile defense system was the best option for defending Turkey from the full range of threats in the region.

NATO also stated in September that Turkey had not informed the alliance of the details of its agreement to purchase an S-400 air defense system from Russia.

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