MOSCOW, April 8. /TASS/. Implementing a contract to deliver the S-400 missile systems to Turkey is a priority for both Moscow and Ankara, Russian President Vladimir Putin said, opening a meeting of the Russian-Turkish High-Level Cooperation Council.
"Our countries are facing serious tasks aimed at boosting defense cooperation. First of all, it is about implementing a contract to deliver the S-400 missile systems to Turkey," Putin said.
According to him, Russia and Turkey have other promising defense cooperation projects to work on. In this connection, the Russian president mentioned the delivery of Russian military products to Turkey.
News about Russian-Turkish talks on the delivery of the S-400 systems first came in November 2016. In September 2017, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that Ankara had signed a contract with Moscow on purchasing the S-400 complexes and made an advance payment. Ankara will begin the deployment of the S-400 systems in October 2019, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said.
Putin said at a press conference following talks with Erdogan that Moscow had decided to step up the delivery of the S-400 systems to Ankara. Erdogan, in turn, said on March 9 that Turkey would not abandon plans to purchase the Russian missile systems.
The S-400 Triumf (NATO reporting name: SA-21 Growler) is the most advanced long-range anti-aircraft missile system that went into service in 2007. It is designed to destroy aircraft, cruise and ballistic missiles, including medium-range ones, and can also be used against ground objectives. The S-400 system can engage targets at a distance of 400 km and at an altitude of up to 35 km.