The United States does not fulfill its obligations to Turkey for the supply of fighters. This was announced on January 30 by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“Now we are negotiating the supply of F-16s, but we are being refused. We were promised F-35 aircraft, but they did not keep their word. Although we paid about $1.4 billion. There are no planes and the money has not been returned. We always keep our word and expect this from our partners, ”Anadolu agency quotes him as saying.
In addition, Erdogan proposed holding a trilateral meeting with Russia and Syria on the situation in northern Syria. He also admitted that Turkey may make different decisions on the issue of Finland and Sweden joining NATO.
On January 20, the Hürriyet newspaper wrote that the process of discussing the sale of F-16 fighter jets by Washington to Ankara continues. Turkey wants the administration of US President Joe Biden to use its influence on Congress, which must approve the sale, the media noted. The US is making it clear that Ankara’s approval of Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership will strengthen the position of approving the sale in Congress.
Earlier, on January 16, Bloomberg reported that the United States is trying to put pressure on Turkey on the issue of Sweden and Finland joining NATO. Thus, Washington warned Ankara that it might not receive a batch of American F-16 fighters if it did not support countries’ applications for NATO membership.
In December 2022, Turkish Minister of National Defense Hulusi Akar said that Sweden and Finland had not yet met all the requirements for joining NATO and until that moment ratification of their accession to the alliance was impossible.
Sweden and Finland applied for NATO membership on May 18 last year. At the end of June, members of the bloc officially invited countries to join the North Atlantic Alliance and agreed to sign accession protocols.