Turkish FM says S-400 deal ‘may be’ signed this week

Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu says there are ‘no problems’ in S-400 deal with Russia

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said on Thursday that there were no issues with the S-400 missile defense system deal Turkey signed with Russia.

“There are no problems regarding the S-400 deal. We have reached an agreement regarding financing,” Çavuşoğlu said.

He stated that only minor details remained. “It may be signed this week,” he added.

Çavuşoğlu said that local Turkish staff would be trained to set up and operate the S-400s. “In the same way that we train our own technicians and engineers to install nuclear power plants, we will also train our own civil personnel and soldiers to install and use the S-400s,” he said.

“If technicians and engineers are required during set up, they will come here from Russia and then return. They do not necessarily need to be soldiers, they may be civilians. This does not mean that Russia will deploy troops here,” Çavuşoğlu added.

 ‘East Jerusalem is Palestine’s capital’

Çavuşoğlu also acknowledged East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.

“We will make every effort for the recognition of the independent Palestinian state East Jerusalem as its capital. We know that there are countries in Europe that want to recognize Palestine. There is a serious global commitment. We need to get this done. A spark was ignited at the OIC,” said Çavuşoğlu.

President Trump last week formally recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and initiated a plan to move the U.S.’s Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan invited leaders of over 50 Muslim nations to Wednesday’s meeting in Istanbul to formulate a joint response to Trump’s decision.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) issued a declaration recognizing East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine.

The “Istanbul Declaration” dubbed “Freedom for Jerusalem” was issued Wednesday evening after the extraordinary summit.

“We confirm that we recognize the state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital, and call the world to recognize East Jerusalem as the occupied capital of Palestine,” the declaration read.

The declaration also rejected and condemned the “unlawful” decision of the U.S. president.