TEHRAN, Nov. 25 (MNA) – Iranian President Rouhani has invited Russia and Turkey to exercise self-restraint in regard to the downing of the Russian jet fighter by Turkish military on Tuesday.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani made the remark on Wednesday, adding “Russia and Turkey are both friendly neighboring countries to Iran and it is of utmost importance to us that our neighbors maintain good relations with one another.”
Rouhani urged Russia and Turkey to take precautionary measures and show the required patience in order to prevent such incidents from happening again.
“Based on the intelligence we have obtained so far, the Russian warplane had been in Syrian airspace when it was targeted; even supposing that the plane had approached Turkey’s airspace, missiles and planes are not toys that someone could just easily decide to shoot down. Such disorderliness in the region is highly dangerous,” said Rouhani.
The Iranian President noted that such provocative acts and their many consequences would legally fall on the shoulders of the one who has started them, inviting Turkey to use caution during these sensitive times.
Rouhani then asserted that the West has yet to show a serious will in fighting terrorism, expressing hope to witness such determination displayed by them in the coming weeks.
“It must be made clear to whom the terrorists are selling oil and who is arming them with advanced weapons like shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles. How come the United Nations does not make any moves to stop this? If you are really going to fight terrorism, you must first fight these issues,” said Rouhani.
The President then criticized NATO for not showing seriousness in tackling terrorism, expressing regret that there are only a handful of countries who are currently fighting against terrorism.
President Rouhani’s remarks came as Turkey shot down a Russian warplane near the Turkish-Syrian border on Tuesday, claiming the Su-24 fighter bomber had violated Turkey’s airspace and ignored 10 warnings. Russia however claims that the jet did not cross the Syria-Turkey border and was, therefore, illegally attacked.
In a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif expressed his concern over the downed Russian jet fighter, saying such incidents would lead to the escalation of Syrian crisis and sending a wrong signal to terrorist groups.