Russian President Vladimir Putin accused Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan of lacking sense, over the shooting of the Russian jet by the Turkish Air Forces.
Putin said today during his annual address to the parliament: “We were prepared to cooperate with Turkey on most sensitive issues and go further than their allies. Allah knows why they did it (shoot down the Russian jet). Apparently Allah decided to punish the ruling clique in Turkey by taking their sanity,” he said.
The Russian President added that Moscow does not accuse the Turkish people for the downing of the jet. “We have many friends in Turkey,” he said and added, “they should know that we do not equate them and part of the current Turkish leadership, which holds a direct responsibility for the deaths of our troops in Syria,” he stressed.
Putin once again accused Erdogan of cooperating with Daesh and stressed that Russia “will not forget this aid to terrorists. We have always considered betrayal the worst and most shameful act.”
Putin said that Kremlin would punish Ankara with additional sanctions for the shooting of the jet. “We are not planning to engage in military saber-rattling (with Turkey),” said the Russian President and added: “But if anyone thinks that having committed this awful war crime, the murder of our people, that they are going to get away with some measures concerning their tomatoes or some limits on construction and other sectors, they are sorely mistaken.” Turkish government will repeatedly regret its action, Putin said.
On Wednesday, the Associated Press (AP) reported that Russian Deputy Minister of Defence Anatoly Antonov invited dozens of foreign military attaches and hundreds of journalists to present them satellite and aerial images of thousands of oil trucks streaming from the Daesh-controlled deposits in Syria and Iraq into Turkish sea ports and refineries.
“The main customer for this oil stolen from Syria and Iraq is Turkey,” said Antonov and added, “the top political leadership of the country, President Erdogan and his family, is involved in this criminal business.”
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan immediately denied the accusation and has pledged to step down if Moscow proves its accusations. Today Turkish Prime Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu also denied the Russian claims and told journalists that it is out of question for Turkey to engage in oil trade with Daesh.
“It is unbelievable even to discuss it. There is no real ground to mention a secret and dirty deal in a region where several states in the international coalition conduct flights […] over there every single day,” Davutoglu claimed.
However, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that Moscow would hand over to the United Nations and all interested countries solid proof of Turkey’s involvement in illicit oil trade with the fundamentalists.
Erdogan said Putin used to call him brave and bold
Turkish daily, Hurriyet, reported today that Erdogan has said to reporters en route to Qatar, that Putin used to call him once “brave and bold,” before the shooting of the Russian plane by the Turkish forces.
“Putin’s statements about me have always been about my bravery and boldness … He also had many words on my honest statesmanship,” Erdogan told the journalists.
After the shooting of the Russian plane, which caused the death of one pilot, the Turkish President told journalists today that problems such as the one between Turkey and Russia “should be solved diplomatically.”
“Russia’s attitude in the aftermath of this incident has not been very diplomatic. It has been sensational. It was also not nice to mention sanctions immediately after the incident,” Erdogan complained and added.
“Previously, airspace violations have been discussed with Russia at all levels. This was not the first such violation. We have documents and there are hundreds of violations. A violation in the Black Sea last year lasted 15 minutes. When we warned, they said ‘the pilots don’t speak English well and there is a misunderstanding.’ The same problems were also faced in the first violation in Syria … These incidents sadden us strategically,” he added.