Syria con­flict: Turk­ish jets ‘in­ter­cept Rus­sian plane’

Daily Trust - - INTERNATIONAL -

Turk­ish F-16 fighter jets were scram­bled af­ter a Rus­sian war­plane vi­o­lated Tur­key’s air space on Satur­day, the for­eign min­istry said.

Rus­sia said the in­ci­dent was a “nav­i­ga­tional er­ror” and it has “clar­i­fied” the mat­ter to Ankara.

Turk­ish jets pa­trolling the bor­der were also “ha­rassed” by an uniden­ti­fied plane on Sun­day, Turk­ish mil­i­tary said.

Rus­sia has been car­ry­ing out air strikes in Syria in sup­port of Pres­i­dent Bashar al-As­sad.

Turk­ish Prime Min­is­ter Ah­met Davu­to­glu said “the rules of en­gage­ment are clear,” who­ever vi­o­lates its airspace, ac­cord­ing to Turk­ish TV.

The Turk­ish for­eign min­is­ter, Feridun Sinir­li­oglu, has spo­ken to his Rus­sian coun­ter­part Sergei Lavrov, as well as min­is­ters from other Nato coun­tries.

The Rus­sian fighter plane “ex­ited Turk­ish airspace into Syria” af­ter be­ing in­ter­cepted, the min­istry said.

The Rus­sian em­bassy in Ankara told the BBC that a Rus­sian plane did vi­o­late Turk­ish airspace on Satur­day.

Mean­while, NATO has con­demned Rus­sian in­cur­sions into Turk­ish airspace as an “ex­treme dan­ger” and de­manded that Moscow halt all at­tacks against the Syr­ian op­po­si­tion and civil­ians.

The al­liance sum­moned the am­bas­sadors of its 28 mem­ber states on Mon­day for an emer­gency meet­ing to re­spond to what Sec­re­taryGen­eral Jens Stoltenberg called “un­ac­cept­able vi­o­la­tions of Turk­ish air space.”

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