Russia ships 120 missiles to Turkey for S-400 system

Turkey hopes the system will be operational by April, a major turning point in Turkey-Russia relations

Russia has sent 120 missiles to Turkey for its S-400 system, according to Russian media and a military source. “Turkey has received two s-400 battalions, more than 120 surface-to-air missiles, as well as auxiliary equipment,” the source said, according to Russia’s TASS news agency.

Russia and Turkey signed a deal in 2017 for Russia to provide its advanced air defense system, a major blow to US-Turkish relations. Turkey had wanted the US Patriot system and is expected to buy Western air defense systems from NATO countries, not go shopping in Moscow. But a variety of issues led to an emerging Russia-Turkish alliance, linked to Astana peace talks for Syria and also Turkish claims that the US supports “terrorists” in Syria. Since 2017, the two countries have discussed other military deals as well, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has frequently hosted Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Erdogan and Putin have carved out a new regional order in the Middle East, agreeing on a ceasefire in Idlib in September 2018 and a ceasefire in northern Syria’s Kurdish region in October 2019, after the US abandoned its mostly Kurdish partners in part of Syria and enabled a Turkish offensive.

Read more: jpost