The Russian government announced that it has reached a deal to sell a missile system to Turkey, despite the U.S. plans to do the same thing.
Here's what we know
The Russian government announced on Wednesday that it had reached a deal to sell its S-400 missile defense systems to Turkey.
The U.S. government announced just a day earlier that the State Department had approved the sale of Patriot missiles to Turkey, a sale potentially worth $3.5 billion. A Turkish deal with Russia would not only endanger this deal, but could end with U.S. sanctions.
The U.S. was also in talks to sell F-35 fighter jets to the Turkish government, but now it is unclear if that deal will still go through. In June, the State Department had warned Turkey that the F-35 deal could fall through if it went ahead with its plan to buy Russian missiles.
The U.S. and NATO have told Turkey that the Russian missiles will not integrate into existing NATO missile systems already in place in Turkey. Turkey has been a member of NATO since 1952. It is a crucial ally for the United States not only because of its geopolitical influence in the region, but because it controls the Strait of Bosporus — the only link between the Mediterranean Sea and Russian ports in the Black Sea.
Who else finalized a weapons deal with Russia?
In October, India finalized a deal with Russia to buy the same type of S-400 missile system from Russia for $5 billion.
The U.S. slapped sanctions on China for its purchase of S-400 missiles in December 2017 and January 2018. Because of this incident, China's Equipment Development Department and its director were banned from U.S. financial systems, denied export licenses, and added to the List of Specified Persons. This list is comprised of people and entities deemed by the U.S. government to be associated with "or operating for or on behalf of, the defense or intelligence sectors of the Government of the Russian Federation."