Despite recent statements and threats, the F-35 process is going smoothly for Turkey and the first batch of deliveries is expected to arrive in Malatya, eastern Anatolia, this November, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said Thursday.
“Our pilots and maintenance teams are continuing to receive training in the U.S., and the necessary infrastructure has been prepared,” the minister added.
Commenting on plans in Syria’s Idlib, Akar said Turkey and Russia were working on forming a joint coordination center in the province.
Ankara is planning to purchase 100 F-35 fighter jets from the U.S. pending congressional approval, and its pilots are currently training on the weapons platform at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona.
Turkish firms also supply the F-35 program with key components, including airframe structures and assemblies, and the center fuselages.