Spouse of deceased Russian pilot says she is ready to meet Turkish FM
Nerdun Hacıoğlu – MOSCOWThe spouse of a deceased Russian pilot, who was killed after Turkish warplanes shot down a Russian aircraft on Nov. 24, 2015, over an alleged airspace violation, has said she is ready to meet Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu.
Elena Peshkova, the wife of Oleg Peshkov, who was killed after Turkey downed a Russian Su-24 jet on its border with Syria, told Russian state-run television channel Rossiya-24 on Nov. 3 that she was ready to meet Çavuşoğlu, a day after the Turkish foreign minister made an appeal during which he expressed his will to meet Peshkova.
“Despite the very sad times my family has experienced, we will travel to Moscow to join the meeting with Çavuşoğlu,” said Peshkova.
“We wanted to make a gesture to the family of the [deceased] pilot. [Russian Foreign Minister] Sergei Lavrov said Russia did everything so there is no need to do it as a gesture. But I said my spouse and I could visit the pilot’s spouse if she agrees and once more to convey our sadness,” Çavuşoğlu said Nov. 2 during an interview on Rossiya-24.
Relations between Russia and Turkey soured after the downing of the jet, which had allegedly violated Turkish airspace along the Syrian border. Relations began to thaw on June 29 following a letter and subsequent telephone calls between the countries’ leaders.
The two leaders met three times in person after the normalization of relations and Russia lifted a ban on Turkish goods, which it had imposed after the jet crisis erupted.