The United States imposed sanctions on Turkey on Monday (December 15th) for the purchase of S-400 air defense systems from Russia. It can be recalled that the ground-to-air defense system was acquired by Turkey from Russia in mid-2019. At the time, Turkey said the acquisition did not pose a threat to NATO allies.
India has also reached a similar agreement with Russia and is due to receive the S-400 air defense system from Moscow in 2021. US sanctions on Turkey have made India cautious and New Delhi is closely monitoring the administration’s decision. US. In particular, President Donald Trump has resigned from India and it remains to be seen whether the new Biden administration will continue with the same.
What does India need for the S-400 anti-aircraft missile system?
The S-400 Triumph is a mobile ground-to-air missile (SAM) system and is seen as the most dangerous in the world, operationally implemented long-range SAM (MLR SAM). Experts say that the S-400 is much better than the high altitude defense system (THAAD) developed in the US.
The system is capable of tracking 100 air targets and engaging six of them simultaneously.
This advanced air defense system is crucial for India because China is also buying the system. Although China sees the acquisition of the S-400 as a “game changer”, it is not very effective against India.
The acquisition of the S-400 system is very important for India to counter attacks in a two-front war.
What is CAATSA?
The Sanctions Opponents Act (CAATSA) was passed unanimously by the US Congress in 2017. The main purpose of the act is to counter Iran, Russia and North Korea through punitive measures.
Section 231 of the law empowers the US president to impose at least five of the 12 sanctions listed – listed in section 235 of the law – on persons engaged in a “significant transaction” with the Russian defense and intelligence sectors.
CAATSA, if implemented in its strict form, would seriously affect India’s arms purchases from Russia.
In addition to the S-400 air defense system, CAATSA can also affect Project 1135.6 frigates and Ka226T helicopters. It will have an impact on joint ventures such as Indo Russian Aviation Ltd, Multi-Role Transport Aircraft Ltd and Brahmos Aerospace.
“We hope that other countries around the world will also note that the United States will fully implement the sanctions of CAATSA Section 231 and that they should avoid subsequent purchases of Russian equipment, especially those that could trigger sections,” the deputy secretary said. for international security and non-proliferation Christopher Ford said after announcing sanctions against Turkey.
It may be recalled that in 2018, India concluded a $ 5.43 billion deal for five units of Russia’s S-400 missile defense system. The Indian government has decided to finalize the agreement, despite US objections.
The United States has repeatedly warned India against buying weapons from Russia, while threatening to impose measures under CAATSA and the stimulus of an alternative missile system.
It seems that the policy under President-elect Joe Biden on arms-buying countries may not change much, as more Democratic leaders support CAATSA.