Russia ‘ready to normalize relationship’ with Turkey
Nerdun Hacıoğlu – MOSCOW
REUTERS photoMoscow is ready to normalize ties with Ankara after they deteriorated following Turkey’s downing of a Russian fighter jet late last year, but Russia has not received any positive signals from Turkey yet, according to Russian Federation Council Chairwoman Valentina Matviyenko.
Matviyenko said that despite the fact Russia was willing to try to repair tense relations, Turkey – which she said bore responsibility to take a step as it downed the Russian jet – had not yet given any signals.
“Our relations with Turkey need to be taken out of the deepfreeze. We are actually ready to solve this but we are not the reason for this coldness between us,” said Matviyenko on March 24.
“For the ice to melt, Turkey needs to take a step and take responsibility for downing our plane. Unfortunately, we have not perceived even an indication from Ankara that such a step will be taken,” she added.
Matviyenko’s remarks came after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Relations between Turkey and Russia have been tense since Turkey downed a Russian fighter jet on Nov. 24, 2015, on grounds of border violation along Turkey’s border with Syria, leading to the death of two Russian soldiers.
While Turkey has stated that it warned the Russian jet about its infraction multiple times, Russia denies this.
Following the jet crisis, Russia began imposing an embargo on Turkish goods as well as visas on Turkish travelers.