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23:18, 30 August 2014 Saturday
16:45, 01 November 2013 Friday

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US threatens Turkish F-35 jet deal
US threatens Turkish F-35 jet deal

The US has told Turkey to choose between the Texas-made F-35 fighter jets and the production of a Turkish made plane.

World Bulletin / News Desk

For a while now, Turkey’s controversial missile deal with a sanctioned Chinese weapons firm has attracted much criticism from NATO and the US. Turkey has suggested extending the deadline for rival offers, and has openly challenged rival firms to place a better bid.

However, reports according to Turkey's Yeni Safak newspaper now suggest that the US, who has objected to the deal under the excuse that Chinese and NATO radar systems cannot be integrated and could possibly leave NATO systems vulnerable to viruses, is now claiming that Turkey’s joint project with Swedish firm Saab to produce ‘a national fighter jet’, saying Turkey’s efforts to produce its own fighter jet is a breach of the F-35 inclusive JSF program.

Described as the greatest defense system of all time, the JSF program, in which Turkey is also a member, is being used by the US as a tool of blackmail. The US has told the member states of the consortium that the program will not work based on national fighter jets. This is a message to Turkey from the US and NATO, telling them that the JSF program will provide all the defense they need and that the development of a national fighter jet is not recommended.

The F-35, which has been named as ‘the lasted manned fighter jet’, will be produced within the JSF program, a central consortium of countries including the US, Turkey, the UK, Italy, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia, Norway and Denmark. Turkey has ordered 100 Texas-made F-35 Lightening II fighter jets for $250 million, which is expected to arrive once the project is completed in 2017. In the mean time, Turkey has purchased some critical software from the Swedish firm Saab and has designed the prototypes of the planned national fighter jet.



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