No negative picture for F-16s from the US: Turkish FM

Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said they see no negative picture in the process of acquiring F-16 fighter jets from the United States.

"There is a relatively positive atmosphere in our relations with the U.S. Problems will likely be resolved, relations will be improved," he said speaking to the NTV broadcaster on June 4.

"Our talks on the F-16 were very positive. U.S. President Joe Biden also said that he favors giving the F-16s to Türkiye, but the approval must be passed by Congress. Several senators in the Democratic Party oppose this. However, we do not see a negative picture at the moment," Çavuşoğlu added.

President Joe Biden on June 30 said that the United States should go ahead with the delayed sale of F-16 warplanes to Türkiye but said Congress needs to approve.

"We should sell them the F-16 jets and modernize those jets as well," Biden said, adding there was "no quid pro quo" of linking the sale to Türkiye's approval for Finland and Sweden entering NATO.

A plan to equip Türkiye with state-of-the-art U.S. F-35 stealth fighters fell through after Türkiye bought Russia's S-400 anti-aircraft missile system, something Washington saw as potentially threatening the security of the F-35 program.
In October last year, Türkiye requested Washington to buy 40 Lockheed Martin-made F-16 fighters and nearly 80 modernization kits for its existing warplanes.

In March, the State Department sent a letter to some members of the U.S. Congress who had opposed the sale, saying "appropriate" U.S. defense trade ties with Türkiye would serve U.S. interests.

The minister reiterated Türkiye's disappointment with U.S. support for the YPG group in Syria.

"We have repeatedly expressed our disappointment with the U.S. aid to...

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