Erdogan: "The F-35 project is bound to collapse if it excludes Turkey"
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan criticized the U.S. for threatening to stall the delivery of F-35 fighter jets over Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 missile systems, saying that Ankara is being subjected to imposition and unfair treatment on F-35 jets, ONAreports citing Daily Sabah.
"The F-35 project is bound to collapse if it excludes Turkey," Erdoğan told the audience at the 14th International Defense Industry Fair (IDEF'19) at Tüyap Fair and Exhibition Center in Istanbul.
Noting that Turkey has not accepted any impositions in the political, diplomatic and economic spheres, Erdoğan said the country will not bow down to any impositions in the defense field.
The president said Turkey has become a leading actor in armed and unarmed unmanned aerial vehicles and has taken steps to make its own fighter jets.
"Hopefully the fleet of our Air Forces will be consisting of domestically produced combat airplanes soon. We are determined to establish the foundations that will provide our and our friends' needs in terms of armor, optics, software, motor, simulation and detonating technologies, which are used by others to confront Turkey," the president said and added: "Those who hesitated to sell us the bombs used in our combat aircraft cannot hide their astonishment."
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