Putin says Russia, Turkey agreed to speed up delivery of S-400s

The Turkish Atomic Energy Authority (TAEK) granted the country's first nuclear power plant, Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), a construction license on Monday that would allow it to build a unit of the plant.

At a press conference in Ankara, Putin announced that Russian Federation would push forward its delivery dates for the S-400 defense systems, which have been due after a contract was signed between the two countries in December, despite objections from Turkey's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies.

Turkey and Russia have chose to shorten the duration of the S-400 air defense missile systems' delivery, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on April 3, speaking in the presidential complex in Ankara in a joint press conference held with his Turkish counterpart. Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Vladimir Putin have launched the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant earlier in the day.

But Ankara-Moscow relations were also tested by a severe crisis from November 2015 when Turkey shot down a Russian war plane over Syria, a confrontation both sides are trying to put behind each other.

"I wish that all our meetings benefit the whole of our region", Erdogan said at a meeting of the High-Level Cooperation Council, which takes place in Ankara under the chairmanship of the Presidents of Russian Federation and Turkey.

Following speeches delivered by the two leaders, Turkish Development Minister Lutfi Elvan pressed the button to lay the foundation of the Akkuyu NPP in Turkey's southern Mersin province and implemented the agreement signed between Turkish and Russian governments back in 2010.

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"In the name of God!" When Akkuyu starts operating with all its reactors we will cover 10% of our country's electrical needs.

"We are aiming in 2023, at the 100 years of our Republic, to be among the top 10 economies in the world".

Half of the offshore section of the pipeline has already been installed.

According to Russian press reports, Turkey has also been hugely interested in a technology transfer and even joint production of the S-400s with Russia, a prospect that has been resisted by some in the Moscow security services.

Erdogan indicated that Turkey was in no mood to listen to criticism from the West over the purchase of the S-400 systems, saying "this issue is now closed".

"This is an issue of commerce".


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