President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the S-400 issue is directly related to Turkey's sovereignty rights and Ankara "will not take a step back from this."

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks to his governing Justice and Development (AK) Party's parliamentary group in Ankara on June 25, 2019.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks to his governing Justice and Development (AK) Party's parliamentary group in Ankara on June 25, 2019. (AA)

Turkey will start receiving its order of Russian S-400 air defence systems in July, according to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"We will hopefully start receiving the S-400 air defence systems, which we ordered, next month," Erdogan told the governing Justice and Development (AK) Party's parliamentary group.

Erdogan said the S-400 issue is directly related to Turkey's sovereignty rights.

"We will not take a step back from this," he added.

Tensions between the US and Turkey have escalated in recent months over the S-400 purchase. Washington said the Russia-made defence system will jeopardise Turkey's role in the F-35 fighter jet programme and could trigger sanctions.

Following protracted efforts to purchase an air defence system from the US with no success, Ankara decided in 2017 to purchase the Russian S-400s.

US officials are now urging Turkey to buy US Patriot missiles, arguing the Russian system would be incompatible with NATO systems and expose the F-35s to possible Russian subterfuge.

Turkey, however, emphasised the S-400 would not be integrated into NATO systems and would not pose a threat to the alliance.

Turkey has urged the formation of a commission to clarify any technical issues, but the US has failed to respond to this proposal.

Source: AA