US must coordinate Syria airstrikes with Damascus: Russia

Before Su-24 downing Putin personally apologized to Erdogan over airspace violation

Prior to the downing of the Su-24, Russian President Vladimir Putin had personally apologized to Turkey’s Erdogan for the violation of Turkish airspace by a Russian aircraft, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has stated.

Moscow has long known about the use of Turkish territory for the training of Islamic State militants for a number of operations, including in the North Caucasus, but was reluctant to talk about it publicly, not wanting to believe that official support came from Ankara.

“Frankly, we have known for a long time how Turkish territory is being used for commercial operations with ISIS, for the transfer of weapons and terrorists to Syria, as well as to provide extremists and militants with an opportunity to heal and rest, and then get ready for new operations, not only in Syria, but also in other regions, including our North Caucasus,” Lavrov said in an interview with Italian journalists.

Lavrov has proposed a thorough examination on how Turkey performs goals set by the coalition in Syria.

“We need to examine how a member of the US-led coalition – the Republic of Turkey – performs goals set by the coalition,” the minister said. “Why is it not bombing terrorists as such, but the Kurds instead? [Kurds] whom Americans consider as potential, and maybe already actual, allies in the fight against terror.”