Police take security measures near Russian Consulate in Istanbul
ISTANBULTurkish police have taken security measures near the Russian Consulate in Istanbul amid expectations of a protest in front of the building and a warning by the French Consulate to avoid the building’s environs.
Police forces were dispatched to the front door of the Russian Consulate building in Istanbul’s central and touristic İstiklal Avenue amid warnings of a scheduled protest.
Meanwhile, the French Consulate in Istanbul sent text messages to Turkey’s French residents, warning against going near the Russian Consulate.
“Message to French citizens: Tomorrow, Dec. 10, a protest will be held in front of the Russian Consulate on İstiklal Avenue. We advise you to stay away from its environs,” the message read.
The protest comes at a time when tensions are high between Moscow and Ankara over the latter’s downing of a Russian jet on Nov. 24 for reportedly violating Turkish airspace.
The Turkish Embassy in Moscow was targeted by an ultra-nationalist group of protesters on Nov. 25, when around 500 protestors carrying Russian and Syrian flags shouted slogans and pelted the embassy with stones.
Meanwhile, consular services at the Consulate General of the United States in Istanbul were also canceled on Dec. 9 due to a “possible security threat.”
“Public services, including visa appointments and non-emergency American citizen services appointments, for Dec. 9, 2015, are canceled and will be rescheduled for a later date,” the consulate announced in a statement.