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US could move F-35 manufacturing out of Turkey over S-400 sale Open in fullscreen

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US could move F-35 manufacturing out of Turkey over S-400 sale

The F-35 is one of the latest fighters jets [Getty]

Date of publication: 4 May, 2019

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The US could penalise Turkey if it goes ahead with its purchase of Russia's S-400 anti-aircraft missile system.

The US has warned it could move manufacturing of the F-35 fighter jet out of Turkey if Ankara goes ahead with its purchase of Russia's S-400 anti-aircraft system.

US Acting Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan said that the government remains opposed to Ankara's plans to buy the S-400.

"If Turkey decides that the S-400 is a decision they want to go forward with, then we have to move work out of Turkey," he said.

Shanahan has said the government is in talks with manufacturers Lockheed Martin and United Technologies to decide what to do next if its NATO ally ignores Washington's warnings not to purchase the Russian system.

The US has repeatedly warned that Turkey's adoption of the Russian missile system alongside US fighter jets would pose a threat to the F-35 and endanger Western defence.

Turkey, as a NATO member, is taking part in the production of the F-35, and has plans to buy 100 jets.

A number of Turkish manufacturers are making parts and equipment for the F-35, including internally carried Stand-off Missiles, airframe assemblies and wiring, leaving the NATO programme partially dependent on them.

Washington has said that US missile defence system if it forgoes the one on offer from Moscow.

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has insisted he will buy the Russian system.

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