Lavrov: Russia Ready to Work with Turkey on Fight against Terrorism

Lavrov: Russia Ready to Work with Turkey on Fight against Terrorism
Thu Oct 15, 2015 17:41:26

Russian Foreign Minister says its country is ready for close cooperation with Turkey in the battle against terrorism following the recent deadly explosions in the Turkish capital, Ankara.

“We are ready for very close cooperation and very close engagement with the Turkish authorities in the fight against the terrorist threat,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said during a conference on Russian-Turkish partnership in Moscow.

On October 10, twin blasts targeted a number of activists who had convened outside Ankara’s main train station for a peace rally organized by leftist and pro-Kurdish opposition groups. The Turkish government says 97 died in the bombings, but the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) puts the death toll at 128.

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has said the attack may have been carried out by Takfiri ISIS terrorists or Kurdish fighters in Syria.


Love-Hate Relationship?

Lavrov’s remarks come as relations between Moscow and Ankara have soured after Turkey claimed that Russian fighter jets carrying airstrikes in Syria had violated Turkish airspace.

The Turkish military said it had scrambled two F-16 warplanes on October 3 after a Russian fighter jet reportedly crossed into its airspace near the southern province of Hatay.

A day later, Ankara claimed a MiG-29 combat aircraft had harassed two of its F-16s by locking its radar on them as they patrolled the border.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan later said Russia runs the risk of losing its friendly ties with Ankara, adding, “If Russia loses a friend like Turkey with whom it has a lot of cooperation, it is going to lose a lot of things. It needs to know this.” Russia later said the first airspace violation had happened by mistake and that no other violation had occurred. Moscow also said it wanted to retain good tied with Ankara.

On September 30, Russia began its military campaign against terrorists operating in Syria upon a request from the Damascus government; Press TV reported.

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