Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he would discuss the purchase of US-made missiles with President Donald Trump this month, despite current tensions with Washington sparked by Ankara's buyout of the system Russian anti-missile defense system S-400.
In an interview with the Reuters news agency on Friday, Erdogan said he had discussed the purchase of the Patriot ground-to-air missiles during a phone call with Trump there is two weeks, and that he would follow through these discussions when the two men would meet at the United Nations General Assembly, which opens next week.
"I said that no matter the package of … S-400 we receive, we can buy you a certain amount of Patriots," Erdogan said.
"But I said we had to create conditions that correspond at least to the S-400," he said, adding that he was referring to the possibility of joint production and favorable loan conditions.
The Turkish leader's remarks come after Ankara's purchase of the Russian missile system in July irritated Washington and raised the prospect of US sanctions against its NATO ally.
The State Department announced that an offer to sell Raytheon's Patriot missile defense system in Ankara had expired.
Relations between Ankara and Washington have been tense as a result of many issues, including conflicting strategies in Syria and the Trump administration 's approach to Iran.
However, the dispute over Russian systems has brought NATO allies to the brink of one of their biggest breakages.
Washington had been trying for months to prevent Turkey's acquisition of the S-400, which can reach targets 400 km away, arguing that they were incompatible with the systems of the S-400. # 39; NATO.
In July, the USA started withdrawing Turkey from its F-35 program – as he has long threatened – after Ankara started receiving the missile defense system.
He said that if the S-400 were to be deployed near the Lockheed Martin F-35 the jets, which Turkey helped to produce, would undermine the defenses of furtive fighters.
In the middle of the impasse, Erdogan suggested last month that Turkey can buy Su-35 and Su-57 combat aircraft manufactured in Russia instead of the F-35.
Trump repeatedly stated that Turkey had been treated unfairly for its decision to buy the S-400 and had blamed the "mess" on the administration of former President Barack Obama.
However, Trump has not ruled out imposing sanctions on Ankara for this problem.
Any sanction could hinder Erdogan's efforts to revive activity in the shrinking Turkish economy, which sank into recession last year.
In response to a question about If Erdogan would ask Trump to prevent the US Treasury from imposing a hefty fine on Turkish bank Halkbank, mainly in the state, for violating US sanctions against Iran, the Turkish president "He said he was confident that he could avoid such an" error ", citing what he said was" a different type of trust "between the two men.
"In my opinion, a country like the United States will no longer want to hurt Turkey's ally, it is not rational behavior," he said.