The members of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the American House of Representatives on Monday expressed their satisfaction over the House’s approval of a resolution calling on Turkey to cancel its planned purchase of the S-400 missile system from Russia.
The resolution, entitled “Expressing concern for the United States-Turkey alliance,” was signed by essentially the entire institutional leadership of the US House of Representatives.
It stresses the historic alliance between the US and Turkey, urging Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to avoid forming a military connection with Russia which could undermine the US-Turkish alliance and Turkey’s role in NATO.
In a joint announcement issued after the resolution was approved, Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel noted that the problem cannot be resolved through a compromise.
“It is something that we rarely see in international relations, but this is a black-or-white issue. There is no middle ground. Either Mr. Erdogan cancels the Russian agreement or he doesn’t,” Engel said, warning that there would be no future option by which Turkey could have both Russian weapons and American F-35 fighter jets.
According to Engel, there was no way that Turkey could both “have its cake and eat it,” as the US cannot risk exposing technology that is crucial for its national defense vis-a-vis Russia.
Congressman Michael McCaul urged Turkey to choose the US and NATO, noting that the American offer provides for accelerated delivery of the “Patriot” system in order to give Ankara an alternative option that will restore its relationship with the US.
The resolution also intends to send a message to Turkey that “Congress does not intend to be a passive spectator” in the event that Ankara proceeds with the acquisition of the S-400 system, and that the move would have serious consequences, the committee stated.