Trump to table new Patriot missile offer to Turkey: Turkish officials

US president said to have asked Erdogan if he was still interested in missiles, despite arrival of rival Russian system


US President Donald Trump told his Turkish counterpart last week that Washington was ready to make a new offer over its Patriot missile system to end a crisis over Ankara’s purchase of the Russian-made S-400 missile system, according to multiple Turkish officials who spoke to Middle East Eye.

In a phone call last Thursday, Trump asked Recep Tayyip Erdogan whether he was still interested in purchasing the Patriots, even though Turkey has begun to receive the S-400 system, the sources said.

“Trump said if Turkey does not unpack the S-400s and purchases the Patriots, then Ankara could continue to operate F-35s and still produce parts of the plane,” a Turkish official, speaking on condition of anonymity due to diplomatic protocol, told MEE.

Even though Turkey has already paid more than $1bn for the F-35 fighter jets, the Pentagon earlier this summer decided to suspend Ankara from its F-35 program, saying the delivery of the S-400s would put the plane’s crucial technology at risk.

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