Ankara will find a substitute for the US F-35 fighter jets if the United States refuses to deliver the aircraft to Turkey over the purchase of the Russian S-400 air defence systems, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.
“There are F-35, but there are also aircraft manufactured in Russia. If we are not able to purchase F-35, Turkey will buy similar aircraft from other countries. And this will continue until we start producing our own fifth-generation fighter jets,” Cavusoglu said as quoted by Turkey’s NTV broadcaster.
He added that the United States had made a lot of controversial statements regarding Turkey’s future participation in the F-35 program and added that a total of four of about 100 aircraft that the country planned to buy had been received so far.
Earlier in the month, the Pentagon announced that Washington halted deliveries and activities with Turkey on F-35 fighter jet program over Ankara’s decision to buy the Russian S-400 air defence systems.