Turkey, Russia spat over downed jet deepens.
A tug-of-war over a Russian warplane shot down by a Turkish fighter jet at the border with Syria escalated Thursday, with Moscow drafting a slew of economic sanctions against Turkey and the Turkish president saying on a defiant note that his military is ready to do the same if another air intrusion happens.
Russian President Vladimir Putin says Russia is ready to cooperate with the U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group.
Putin said after talks with French President Francois Hollande that Russia is open to closer co-operation with both France and the U.S.-led coalition on selecting IS targets.
At the same time, he lashed out at the U.S. over the downing of a Russian warplane by Turkey, saying the U.S. should have prevented its coalition ally Turkey from making such a move.
The spat with Turkey reflected a clash of ambitions of two strongman leaders, neither of whom appeared willing to back down and search for a compromise.
Turkey shot down the Russian Su-24 military jet on Tuesday, insisting it had violated its airspace despite repeated warnings. The incident marked the first time in half a century when a NATO member shot down a Russian plane, raising the threat of a military confrontation between the alliance and Moscow.
Putin denounced the Turkish action as a “treacherous stab in the back,” and insisted that the plane was downed over the Syrian territory in violation of the international law.
“Until that moment, we haven’t heard a clear apology from Turkey’s top political leadership, or an offer to compensate for the damage or a promise to punish the criminals who committed that crime,” he said in the Kremlin while receiving credentials from several ambassadors. “It gives an impression that the Turkish leadership is deliberately driving the RussianTurkish relations into a deadlock, and we regret that.”
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was in no mood to apologize, and warned that Ankara would act in the same way in case of another intrusion.
“Faced with the same violation today, Turkey would give the same response,” Erdogan said. “It’s the country that carried out the violation which should question itself and take measures to prevent it from happening again, not the country that was subjected to a violation.”
A man puts flowers aside photos of Lt. Col. Oleg Peshkov and sailor Alexander Pozynich at a monument outside Russian Army General Staff headquarters in Moscow, Russia, Thursday. Peshkov was a pilot of Russian Su-24, which was shot down by Turkish air...