US pulls plug on Turkish pilot F-35 training over Russian S-400 row, as threat of sanctions grows

The US military has halted a program for training Turkish pilots on the F-35 fighter jets taking place in the United States, following a warning last week from the US State Department to Ankara, giving it until July 31 to scrap a contentious deal with Russia for the S-400 missile defense system, Foreign Policy magazine reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, the US military also cut off pilots' access to the aircraft's restricted information amid concerns that "continuing to allow the Turkish pilots access to the F-35's most sensitive data - instruction manuals, for example - after the July 31 deadline was imposed would provide them an opportunity to take classified information out of the secure space," Foreign Policy quoted an official as saying.

"Without a change in Turkish policy, we will continue to work closely with our Turkish ally on winding down their...

Continue reading on: