According to Turkey’s Milliyet daily, if the US Congress refuses to provide F-16 fighter jets to Ankara, Turkey may consider purchasing Russian Su-57 aircraft.
As a result, Ankara has requested that Washington supply 40 F-16 Block 70 fighters as well as 80 Block 70 upgrade kits for Turkish F-16 aircraft currently in service. If this request is denied, Ankara will consider at alternatives, including the Russian Su-57.
The Agreement is reported to require approval from both the US State Department and the US Congress. The United States and Turkey’s decade-long cooperation has seen numerous ups and downs in recent years, owing to concerns such as disputes over Syria policy, Turkey’s close links with Russia, and Turkey’s record of freedom and human rights.
Experts believe that Turkey’s desire to purchase additional F-16 fighter planes will be difficult to obtain approved by the US Congress due to poor relations between the two nations following the S-400 dispute. The US Congress has broad backing to continue putting pressure on Turkey over the S-400 purchase and its terrible human rights record. Turkey, on the other hand, anticipates that relations would strengthen under President Biden’s leadership.
According to Forbes, Turkey presently has roughly 236 F-16s with readiness levels, including Block 30, Block 40, Block 50, and Block 50+ variants, according to independent research organization BlueMelange. Because of their length, combat becomes less intense.
As a result, Turkey is now looking for the most recent F-16 Block 70. This model, according to Lockheed Martin, combines capabilities upgrades, most notably an upgraded active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, with a redesigned avionics structure, and other upgrades that extend its lifespan. The aircraft’s life expectancy is 50% greater than that of prior production F-16s.
Previously, Russia stated its willingness to negotiate the supply of Su-57 and Su-35 aircraft with Turkey.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan stated in October of last year that the US had offered to buy F-16 fighter jets after Ankara was excluded from the program to develop the newest F-35 fighter jet. At the same time, Turkey stated that if the US freezes the sale of F-16s after the F-35, it will be able to purchase Russian Su-35 and Su-57 fighter jets.
The Su-57 is a fifth-generation stealth fighter designed by Russia to combat with US and Western opponents such as the F-22 and F-35.
The Su-57’s strength resides not only in its stealth characteristics, but also in the most advanced Russian aviation technologies available today, such as active electronically scanned array radar, ePilot pilot support system, A range of sensors, and current aviation armaments…
The Su-57 (also known as PAK FA and T-50 in experimental form) is designed to defeat all forms of air, ground, and sea targets. The Su-57 flew for the first time in 2010. Russia deployed the Su-57 to Syria twice at the end of 2018 for genuine combat testing.