According to several news sources, American representatives warned that the contemplated purchase of S-400 air defense systems from could fall into the scope of Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, CAATSA.

US had already proposed building a new joint air defense system instead. Two Turkish ministers denied that the purchase would trigger CAATSA action.

-US sanctions conflict could erupt into a major row in the coming months, as OFAC might impose fines on    a Turkish    bank or banks mentioned in the Hakan Atilla sanctions trial.  The detention of American Consular employees has also infuriated the Congress.

S-400 purchase major problem for USA

The has warned s around the world that they could face sanctions over any “significant transactions” they make with ’s military, senior U.S. officials have said.

The warnings officials disclosed on February 21 to reporters in follow the U.S. State Department’s claim this week that the threat of U.S. sanctions on ’s defense industry has already cost Moscow some $3 billion in lost military sales.

The senior U.S. officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said a couple of “big countries” were reconsidering defense purchases from as a result of the global warning sent out by U.S. President ’s administration following its publication of a list of n defense and intelligence agencies and companies targeted by U.S. sanctions.

The officials confirmed that , which is negotiating the purchase of S-400 missile defense systems from , is one of the countries that received the warning. has said it is also looking at alternative systems to purchase from allies. (Source:  Radio Free Europe)

Daily SABAH:   not concerned

Daily SABAH, a newspaper known to be close to AKP’s view retorted to this report with the following by-line:

“When the U.S. includes the company selling the S-400 system within the scope of sanctions, there is a possibility that might indirectly affected by this. However, they cannot impose a direct sanction against ,” Fikri Işık, deputy prime minister said in relation to the issue.

Commenting on the issue,  [Foreing Minister] Çavuşoğlu said that “ urgently needs an air defense system. We want to buy from our allies but it failed.” He stressed that had to look for other alternatives to meet its needs and added that has no problems with its allies. Çavuşoğlu stated that the members of the commission working on the issue need to understand each other well.

Sanctions row could undermine an already  strained relationship

There are several areas where US authorities are reported to be contemplating sanctions against . The conviction of former Halkbank executive Mr. Hakan Atilla on charges of violating sanctions on could potentially trigger fines against Halkbank, or other state banks mentioned in the indictment. OFAC has  been screening through Halkbank records in the bank’s headquarters, but is yet to issue a statement about findings. According to  Turkish sources still following the trial, new sealed documents submitted to the court could indicate additional indictments for Turkish names or entities.

There are also several hints from Sers and Congressmen that ’s arrest of two American Consular employees (Turkish nationals) and the house arrest of third violate the Magnitsky Act thus deserving sanctions.

Finely, according to a recent Wall Street Journal report, “An ian airline under sanctions by the U.S. for ferrying weapons and fighters into repeatedly bought U.S.-made jet engines and parts through Turkish front companies over the past several years, most recently in December, federal investigators said in a new U.S. filing.

The U.S. says in the filing that a Turkish woman set up a series of shell companies to buy needed equipment from U.S. suppliers for ’s Mahan Air, helping the airline circumvent the longstanding sanctions and fueling suspicions about within the Trump administration”.

Turkish experts claim that White House is divided on the wisdom of slapping sanctions on a key ally whose cooperation is critical in . On the other hand, the fury against has reached the dimensions of a “tsunami”  commented an experienced correspondent.