Duvar English - Reuters
U.S. President Joe Biden is committed to maintaining sanctions on Turkey under the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) for buying Russian S-400 missile defenses and would impose further sanctions if Ankara bought additional major arms systems from Moscow, a senior U.S. diplomat said on July 21.
In congressional testimony, U.S. Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland also condemned Turkish Cypriot authorities' announcement of a partial reopening of Varosha, an abandoned town, for potential resettlement, ratcheting up U.S. criticism.
The U.S. diplomat's statement came a day after Alexander Mikheev, the director of Russia's state-owned arms exporter Rosoboronexport, announced that Russia and Turkey are completing their consultations on the contract for the delivery of the second batch of Russia's S-400 air defense systems.
"Final consultations are being held, a financial model was formed, a program of technological cooperation in this project was formed, so we expect to complete this project in the coming months," Mikheev told reporters at the International Aviation and Space Salon MAKS-2021 on July 20.
Ankara's purchase of the S-400s has strained ties with the United States and NATO allies over concerns that the systems are not compatible with the alliance's defenses and may threaten the U.S. F-35 fighter jets. Turkey, which was expelled from the jet program over the Russian systems, rejects the concerns.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan last month said that he had told Biden at their first meeting that Turkey would not change its stance on its S-400s.