The U.S. has engaged in talks with Turkey in a bid to convince its NATO ally not to push through with a plan to buy long-range missiles from China, Agence France-Presse reported Thursday.
Fulya Ozerkan writes Francis Ricciardone, the U.S. ambassador to Turkey, has expressed Washington’s wariness over the $4 billion deal with China Precision Machinery Export-Import Corp.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier this week that nothing has been finalized although he revealed that CPMEIC’s deal looks to be the “best” offer on the table right now.
According to the report, the Chinese firm’s willingness to co-manufacture the missiles with Turkey is among its selling points.
Ricciardone said that while the defense acquisition may have been a commercial move, “we are now dealing with a strategic mutual defense question,” according to the report.