Ankara didn't allow Washington to twist its arms

Turkey's intention to buy Russian S-400 air defense systems has increased tensions with the United States. Last year, Washington, as part of its pressure on the ally, doubled import tariffs on Turkish steel and aluminum (this caused a crisis in the Turkish economy). Recently, the USA has announced its decision to end preferential trade deals with Ankara. "However, this step, unlike last year's increase in tariffs for steel and aluminum, will not seriously affect the Turkish economy and is more a symbolic gesture," RISS expert Vladimir Fitin said.

The Pentagon stated that if Ankara doesn't reconsider its decision to buy Russian anti-missile systems, the possibility of supplying America's Patriot missile systems and F-35 fighters, as well as joint US-Turkish production of these fighters, will be called into question.

The Turkish response was not long in coming. In an interview with Turkish television, President Erdogan said that the tactics of twisting Turkey's arms wouldn't be successfull and his country couldn't be controlled in that way. In addition, the leader added that in such a situation, he might request from Moscow the supply of the Russia's newest S-500 defense complex.

RISS expert underscored that Erdogan drew attention to the Americans' position on buffer zone on the border with Turkey and Syria. The fact is that Washington still doesn't allow the entry of Turkish troops there. Meanwhile, Ankara considers this as a necessary condition for its security.

"Even the mood of the Turkish press has recently become clearly different. Mass media underlines that America behaves like a bull in a china shop, that Washington recognizes as allies only those who fully follow its requirements. Turkish people are categorically against this attitude towards their country. Ankara will continue to conduct an independent policy and determine national interests on its own," the analyst concluded.

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