Ankara – Relationship between the erstwhile Cold War adversaries Russia and Turkey is at its lowest in the recent memory as tension between the two intensifies and Russia announces punitive economic sanctions against Turkey over shooting down one of its warplanes. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan rejected the sanctions as “emotional” and “unfitting”.
On Tuesday Turkey shot down a Russian Su-24 jet reiterating that despite repeated warnings, it had breached its airspace. This is the first instance in fifty years that a NATO alliance member assaulted a Russian Plane, raising the threat of a confrontation between the coalition member and Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin adjudicated Turkish maneuver as a “treacherous stab in the back” and asserted that the jet was hit in Syrian province in violation of international law.
Erdogan on Friday admonished Moscow not to “play with fire” however added he did not want to harm relations with Russia. The feud showed a conflict of ambitions of the two leaders, neither of whom looked to concede and lookout for a compromise.
Mr. Erdogan shunned Mr. Putin’s blame of the event as “unacceptable”, stating Turkey didn’t purposely strike the Russian plane. Vladimir Putin retorted Russia gave intelligence beforehand to the US of the flight path of the warplane struck by Turkey. Russia President at a joint press conference with French President Hollande in Kremlin stated “The American side, which leads the coalition that Turkey belongs to, knew about the location and time of our planes’ flights, and we were hit exactly there and at that time,” Putin rubbished the claim made by Turkey that it wouldn’t have shot the plane if it had known it was Russian. The Russian planes have identification signs and those are clearly noticeable he added. “Instead of … ensuring this never happens again, we are hearing unintelligible explanations and statements that there is nothing to apologize about.”
Both leaders are due to attend a climate change summit in the French capital, Paris, in the wake of the downing of a Russian plane by Turkey this week.
Mr. Putin has said Russia gave prior information to the United States of the flight path of the plane downed by Turkey on the Syrian border earlier this week.
However Turkish President Erdogan had no wish to atone and brazenly stating that his forces will strike upon any intruder in future as well.