WASHINGTON (GDC) — After a year of speculation about what would happen to Turkey’s F-35A after the country was ousted from the joint strike fighter program last year, — the U.S. Defense Department procured all eight aircrafts destined for Turkey, learned GDC citing Defense News.
The U.S. Air Force will officially buy eight F-35A conventional takeoff and landing jets originally built as part of a $862 million contract modification. The Lockheed Martin will modify all eight aircrafts to the U.S. configuration standard.
Turkey had planned to buy 100 F-35As over the course of the program, but was ejected from the program last July after accepting the S-400 air defense system from Russia after repeated warnings from U.S. officials.
At that point, Turkey’s first F-35s had already rolled off the production line and its pilots and maintainers were training to fly and fix them stateside alongside U.S. personnel at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., and Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. However, the aircraft were never officially delivered to Turkey.
Since then, Turkey has been evicted from the F-35 programme.
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