The Trump administration slapped sanctions on Turkey over Ankara’s purchase of the S-400, a Russian missile defense system. The sanctions on Turkey, a NATO ally, come after over a year of warnings and threats from Washington over the arms deal.
The sanctions targeted Turkey’s Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB), a government body that manages the procurement and development of military equipment. Ismail Demir, the head of the SSB, and three employees were also hit with sanctions.
Turkey condemned the sanctions, calling the move a “grave mistake,” and said it would retaliate as necessary.
Since Turkey purchased the S-400 in 2019, President Trump has been under pressure to sanctions Ankara over the deal. Congress has argued the S-400 deal violates the 2017 Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act, which seeks to prevent countries from purchasing Russian arms.
The 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes an amendment that would require US sanctions over the S-400 purchase. The NDAA has passed through both chambers and is awaiting Trump’s signature to become law, although he is threatening to veto the massive $740 billion spending bill.
The US has taken other actions to punish Turkey for buying the Russian missile system. Last year, the US kicked Turkey out of the F-35 fighter jet program.