MOSCOW (Dispatches) – The Iraqi government has decided to buy Russian S-400 missile systems, but the exact date of the purchase is yet to be defined, Iraqi Ambassador to Russia Haidar Hadi said on Wednesday.
"As for S-400, there is no road map that would set exact dates and define how we should move toward this [purchasing S-400]. The Iraqi government has made a decision, it wants to buy these missiles", Hadi told journalists at a press conference held at the Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency.
When asked about Washington's possible moves to hinder the purchase, the envoy said there are "relevant diplomatic channels" to solve this kind of problems with Americans.
The plans to purchase the Russian air defense system, announced by Turkey earlier, triggered a conflict between Ankara and Washington. U.S. officials have repeatedly warned the Turkish government against this move, threatening to block the sale of F-35 fighter jets to their Middle Eastern ally and to stop manufacturing support for the aircraft. The Pentagon claimed that the S-400s are incompatible with NATO equipment and alleged that the Russian systems pose a threat to the F-35s.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday Turkey is discussing with the United States details of a working group Ankara has proposed setting up to look into the impact of its purchase of Russian S-400 missile systems.
Cavusoglu said that stopping or postponing the delivery of the S-400s is not on the agenda.