United States suggested Turkey to transfer its Russian-made S-400 missile defence system to Ukraine to counteract the Russian armed forces.
American officials are proposing that NATO member Turkey could potentially arm Ukraine with the much more sophisticated brand new Russian-built S-400 missiles it took delivery of in 2019.
U.S. officials have floated the suggestion over the past month with their Turkish counterparts but no specific or formal request was made, the sources told Reuters. They said it also came up briefly during Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman’s visit to Turkey earlier this month. The Biden administration has been asking allies who have been using Russian made equipment and systems including S-300s and S-400s to consider transferring them to Ukraine as it tries to fend off a Russian invasion.
In addition, U.S. Defense Secretary Austin visited Slovakia and Bulgaria, which have the S-300 missile system, after Ukrainian President Zelensky “named” the S-300 missile system in his speech to the U.S. Congress on the 15th. U.S. Defense Department spokesman Kirby said earlier that the U.S. and its allies will provide Ukraine with the weapons Ukraine needs, and the U.S. is currently negotiating with its allies.
From the US request and having close military ties with Kyiv, will Turkey decide to send the S-400 purchased from Russia to Ukraine in exchange for F-35 and Patriot from the US?
According to sources US is offering to provide F-35 stealth fighters and Patriot air defense systems to Ankara in exchange for Turkey sending the S-400 to Ukraine for use and it is highly likely that this offer will be accepted.
The Turkish authorities have not commented on any U.S. suggestion or proposal relating to the transfer to Ukraine of Ankara’s S-400 systems, which have been a point of long-standing contention between the two NATO allies.
Turkish foreign ministry officials were not immediately available for comment.
Turkish sources and analysts said any such suggestion would be a non-starter for Turkey, citing issues ranging from technical hurdles related to installing and operating the S-400s in Ukraine, to political concern
As is known, the US State Department is currently looking to gather S-300 air defense systems around the world to transfer to Ukraine to create a no-fly zone. Even US said that it will provide compensation and US made air defence system whoever will give their air defence systems to Ukraine but still many countries denied to send their defence system to Ukraine until the replacement is found.
However, the S-300 complexes that Ukraine can receive are mostly outdated like the S-300PS variant or the latest S-300PMU-1, so to withstand the attacks of Russian fighter jets, Kyiv needs a much more powerful weapon, like the S-400.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Turkey may consider transferring its S-400 systems to Ukraine in order to receive F-35 fighter jets and Patriot missiles from the US, as well as the removal of sanctions on Turkey.
Ukraine needs anti-aircraft weapons, and Turkey has one thing that it can provide – the Russian-made S-400 Triumf system that Ankara bought four years ago, which provoked a backlash from the US, which caused Washington stops delivering F-35 stealth fighters and other defence equipment.
“There is no doubt that the S-400 will strengthen Ukraine’s air defenses and their removal from Turkey’s arsenal will pave the way for the country’s return to the F-35 program and lifting sanctions”.
“The gap in Turkey’s air defense system can be filled in the short term with American Patriot batteries and eventually Ankara’s own Siper missiles which is being developed from S-400 technology,” said by Wall Street Journal.
At the same time, another American publication reported that Washington made a similar offer to Turkey about two weeks ago, when Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R. Sherman visited the country. However, at that time, Turkey did not express its attitude because it was concerned that supplying Ukraine with S-400 air defense systems could make it an object of anger from Russia, the New York Times said.
Turkey is a very close military partner of Ukraine, Ankara is directly providing its allies with Bayraktar TB2 drones, which are causing a lot of damage to Russian troops on the battlefield.
Given the fact that it is openly supplying weapons to Ukraine and criticizing Moscow’s decision with the Crimea peninsula as well as the two self-proclaimed republics of the Donbass, Turkey is clearly not afraid of a reaction from Russia like what the international press is still predicting.
The prospect of Turkey soon sending the S-400 to its allies is making Russia extremely worried, because this weapon is fully capable of helping the Ukrainian Armed Forces “close the sky”.
In addition to the long-range 48N6E3 missile has a range of 250 km, the Turkish S-400 is also equipped with 9M96 medium-range ammunition, making it essentially take on the role of the S-350 Vityaz, this is another factor make Russia “startled”.