Turkey got sanctioned with impositions from the United States on Monday, December 15, 2020, for acquiring from Russia, the S-400 air defence systems. It was in mid-2019 when Turkey acquired the ground-to-air defences system from Russia. Turkey also stated at that time that there is no threat to the allied countries due to the acquisition. A similar deal is inked by India with Russia and is all set to receive from Moscow in 2021, the S-400 air defence system.
Now, India is cautious after the impositions of sanctions on Turkey by the U.S. and New Delhi is in close monitoring of the administration of the U.S’s decision. A waiver to India is given by the outgoing President, Donald Trump notably. But, it is yet to get seen whether the upcoming administration of Biden would continue with the same or not. It is highly possible that Biden would also continue with the same stance of the Trump as far as the deal of S-400 is concerned but it may also happen that the stance on the deals is altogether changed by the new President.
India and S-400 air defence system
The S-400 is a mobile, surface-to-air missile system (SAM). It got seen as the most dangerous operationally deployed modern long-range SAM (MLR SAM) of the world. Experts are of the opinion that it is much better than the US-developed Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD). Tracking a hundred targets of airborne and keeping in the engagement of six of them simultaneously is the main capability of the system. China is also buying the same advanced air defence system due to which it also becomes crucial for India. It is not very effective against India although China sees the acquisition of the S-400 system as a game-changer. The system is very essential for India for countering attacks in a two-front war.
Imposition on Turkey
Mike Pompei who is the Secretary of the State said that Turkey is made clear at the highest levels by the United States on numerous occasions that their purchasing of the S-400 system would endanger the security of the military technology and personnel of the U.S. and provide substantial funds to the defence sector of Russia. As well as access of the Russians to the armed forces of Turkey and the defence industry. Furthermore, he said that nevertheless the procurement and testing of S-400 moved forward by Turkey to meet its defence requirements by NATO-interoperable despite the alternative availability. He also urged Turkey for immediate coordination with the United States and resolves the problem of S-400 immediately.
The United States valued ally is Turkey and also an important regional security partner and hence they seek the continuance of their decades-long history and remove Turkey’s S-400 possession obstacle as soon as possible for productive defence-sector cooperation. It is a delicate time for the new moves in relations between Ankara and Washington. The relation was already at odd over the acquisition of the S-400 missile defence system from Russia, the action of Turkey in Syria, and the Armenia, and Azerbaijan, and in the Eastern Mediterranean conflicts by Turkey.