Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday he told US President Donald Trump during talks in Washington last week that Turkey would not give up on the Russian S-400 missile defense systems it procured this year despite protests from its NATO ally.
Erdogan and Trump held talks at the White House to overcome mounting differences between the allies. Washington has said the S-400s pose a threat to its F-35 stealth fighter jets and has suspended Turkey from the jet programme, where it is a buyer and manufacturer. It has also warned of US sanctions over the deal, but has yet to impose them.
Speaking to members of his AK Party in parliament, Erdogan also said he had told Trump that if the United States maintained its “uncompromising stance” on the F-35s, Turkey would have to seek alternatives to meet its medium-term defense needs.