BRUSSELS --- The United States will stop Turkish forces flying and developing its F-35 stealth jets if Ankara goes ahead with the purchase of a Russian air defense system, the U.S. envoy to NATO said on Tuesday.
Washington and its allies have urged fellow NATO member Ankara not to install the S-400 system, saying that would let the technology learn how to recognize the F-35s, which are built to avoid tracking by enemy radars and heat sensors.
But Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan vowed anew on Tuesday to press on with the S-400 purchase despite allies’ concerns.
“Everything indicates that Russia is going to deliver the system to Turkey and that will have consequences,” Kay Bailey Hutchison, the U.S. ambassador to NATO, said in Brussels.
“There will be a disassociation with the F-35 system, we cannot have the F-35 affected or destabilized by having this Russian system in the alliance,” she told reporters. (end of excerpt)
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(See related article: “JSF Program Bylaws Support Turkey on F-35 Participation” in our ‘Features’ section—Ed.)