President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Ankara and Moscow have finalized the deal for the purchase of S-400 missile defense systems, adding that Russia has proved its sincerity by accepting an earlier delivery date than initially planned, during a joint press conference after his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Ankara.
While neither Erdoğan nor Putin revealed an exact date for the rescheduled delivery, Undersecretary for Defense Industries İsmail Demir announced in a tweet that the delivery for the Russian-made system was moved forward to July 2019 from the first quarter of 2020.
Last December, Ankara announced that it had concluded an agreement with Moscow for the purchase of two S-400 missile systems for $2.5 billion by early 2020.
Since Ankara seeks to build its own missile defense system, the deal involves technology and knowledge transfer. The S-400 system is the new generation of Russian missile defense systems, and so far Russia has only sold them to China and India. Last year, both China and India signed agreements for the procurement of four regiments of the Russian-made S-400s and delivery is expected to begin in 2020.