July 12, 2019 / 8:56 PM / 11 days ago

Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400s does not change strategic orientation: minister

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkey’s purchase of Russian S-400 missile systems does not mean a change of the country’s strategic orientation, Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar told his U.S. counterpart by phone on Friday, adding that the acquisition was a necessity.

Turkey’s Defence Ministry also cited Akar as saying Ankara was still assessing the bid to acquire U.S. Patriot air defense systems and that a deterioration of bilateral relations would not serve the interests of either country.

Reporting by Daren Butler; editing by Jonathan Oatis

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