Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) released the following statement today after President Donald J. Trump announced that he would – after some hesitation – join Congress in barring Turkey from receiving the F-35 fighter jet:
“I am glad President Trump has overcome his previous reluctance and has now decided to join our bipartisan efforts in Congress to halt the delivery of F-35 jets to Turkey, which will help safeguard NATO’s defense systems. The President must now follow through on sanctioning Turkey for its defiant actions and its embrace of Russian military hardware, as required by the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, a bill he signed into law. Congress must also codify a prohibition on the transfer of F-35s to Turkey, as laid out in House-passed appropriations bills and the National Defense Authorization Act. At this important time for European security, we cannot afford to cozy up to authoritarian dictators, like President Erdogan, who threaten NATO’s security.”
Congressman Sarbanes has led the bipartisan effort in Congress to prevent Turkey from receiving American F-35 fighter jets unless the country halts its attempts purchase and deploy the Russian S-400 advanced missile defense system.