Turkey has deployed its new S-400 air and missile defense systems in its capital city of Ankara, nearly coinciding with the commencement of the training of Turkish personnel tasked with operating these Russian systems.
On September 3, ImageSat International (ISI) released a set of images depicting the S-400s installed in the capital. Although the radars are stationed and deployed, the launchers are left unloaded.
A day later, Turkey’s Defense Ministry announced that it had kick-started tutoring its personnel on the use of the Russian systems. "S-400 training started in Gatchina, Russia, with the participation of Air Force Command personnel as part of long-range air-and-missile defense system project," the ministry said in a tweet.
It could be possible that the current S-400 stationing is trial and test for redeployment at a permanent site. However, this location may be the permanent site, ISI stated in its assessment report.
Turkey struck a $2.5 billion deal with Russia for S-400s in 2017. Delivery of first batch of systems concluded this 25 July.
The country is currently receiving the second batch of the Russian systems, shipment of which commenced on August 27. “The observed systems could include the ones that were delivered in the second shipment from Russia to Turkey,” the ISI report said.
In addition, Ismail Demir, president of Turkey’s state defense industry institution, revealed on September 4 that “the S-400s will be ready at full capacity, including trainings and other activities by April 2020.”