O.s.S.Sjects Turkey From F-35 Fighter Program

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WASHINGTON – The Trump administration formally issued Turkey from the Joint Fighter 35 F-35 program which was led by America over Ankara's Russian air defense system decision, which prompted a protest from Turkish officials.

Pentagon officials said Wednesday that Russia's purchase of a S-400 climate protection system was not in line with participation in the F-35 program and confirmed the removal of Ankara's participation.

The White House said on Wednesday earlier that Turkey finished the deal to buy the Russian system, undermining the commitments of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and put a new strain on the alliance and Washington's relations with long-term ally.

The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that the US decision did not comply with the spirit of the NATO alliance and that there were no legitimate grounds.

“We ask the United States to correct this mistake, which will cause irreversible damage to our relationship,” said the ministry.

The administrative statements came a day after President Trump said that the United States would post sales of stealth-fighters to Turkey back after Ankara accepted the delivery of the new Russian system.

United States officials have long stated that the high-level radar capabilities of the Russian missile system could collect information on the F-35 splashed if both were used by the same country.

Turkey took the first Russian S-400s last week, showing a high point in tension between Washington and Ankara, who is feared by officials that they are coming closer to Moscow.

Pentagon officials at Wednesday's news briefing refused to give details about the possible effects on Turkey's future membership of NATO, which began in 1952. But officials said Turkey is still a strategic partner of SA and that military-to-relations would do so. between the two countries they remain "strong and resilient."

“Our partnership is regrettable that we have come at the moment,” said Ellen Lord, the Pentagon top acquisition officer.

Turkey was one of the largest F-35 export customers and planned to purchase 100 jets, the third behind the US and Japan alone. It is one of eight partner countries that joined the F-35 program in 2002, before the design and production years delayed the arrival of the aircraft and put billions of dollars in costs.

Mr Lord said there would be a cost of up to $ 600 million in one-off costs for Turkish manufacturing suppliers producing 900 parts for the plane. Most of this work, valued at around $ 1 billion, is being moved to the United States.

She said that removing the Turkey from the register would have little impact.

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, which takes the F-35 and derives about 30% of its sales from the airplane, which affects the invasion from Turkey. He hopes to find alternative buyers for planes destined for Turkey, officials said.

The White House said that while Turkey's involvement with Russia undermined NATO's commitments, Washington and Ankara remained as allies.

“As NATO allies, our relationship is multi-faceted, and not focused on the F-35 alone,” said the White House.

The administration of the Trump had difficulties responding to Turkish decision to buy the Russian system. Mr Trump expressed condolences to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who turned to Russia after Washington who applied strict conditions to the US Patrol missile system. to sell.

After last week's Russian system was delivered, the Pentagon canceled a news schedule twice, then canceled it, before Turkey was formally expelled Wednesday.

Turkey's recent movements have resulted in differences between Ankara and Washington over Syria and a sharp disagreement on the role of Kurdish fighters, who said US officials played a major role in the transformation of Islamic State militants but who saw the t Turkey as a terrorist force.

Write Gordon Lubold at Gordon.Lubold@wsj.com and Doug Cameron at doug.cameron@wsj.com

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