Turkey’s National Defense Ministry said that first shipment of Russian S-400 missile defense system hardware to Ankara started on Friday.
“First batch of equipment of S-400 missile defense system, which is procured to meet Turkey’s air and missile defense need, has started to arrive at Murted Air Base in Ankara as of July 12, 2019,” the ministry said on Twitter.
In a related context, the country’s defense industries authorities announced in a statement, that the first batch of the S-400 missile defense system has started to arrive in the capital Ankara.
It pointed that the delivery of the other parts of the system would continue in the coming days.
At least two Russian Air Force AN-124 cargo planes flew to Turkey on Friday morning, data from plane tracking website Flightradar24 showed. Turkish broadcasters showed footage of one plane parked at airbase and a second one landing at around 12.30 pm (0930 GMT).
Russia’s Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation confirmed on Friday it had started delivering the S-400 systems and that the deliveries would continue in accordance with an agreed schedule, the RIA news agency reported.
Twenty Turkish servicemen received training from Russia in May-June and 80 more Turkish servicemen will receive training to use the S-400 system, An unnamed military-diplomatic source was quoted as saying.
Turkey says the system is a strategic defence requirement, particularly to secure its southern borders with Syria and Iraq.
President Tayyip Erdogan said after meeting President Donald Trump at a G20 summit last month that the United States did not plan to impose sanctions on Ankara for buying the S-400s.