Turkey has already paid a deposit to Russia for the purchase of the S-400 anti-ballistic missile system despite opposition from its NATO allies, President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an has said, underlining that both Ankara and Moscow were committed to accomplish the sale process of the high-tech defense equipment.
"Our friends have already signed [an agreement on] S-400s. A deposit has also been paid, as far as I know. The process will continue by the transfer of a credit from Russia to us. Both Mr. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and myself, we are determined on this issue," Erdo?an told journalists on his return from Kazakhstan on Sept. 10.
Erdo?an's remarks debunked some news reports published in different Western newspapers that suggested that Turkey will backtrack from purchasing Russian-made anti-ballistic missiles system as they wouldn't be interoperable with NATO's radars.
But Erdo?an denied these reports, stressing that no other country has the right to discuss Turkey's sovereign and independent decisions in upgrading its defense.
"It's us who will make decisions regarding our independence. We are responsible over taking security measures for the defense of our country. We'll save ourselves if we face difficulties in procuring defense systems," he said.