Turkey

Erdogan says Turkey defended 'security, brothers’ rights'

Following Turkey's shooting down of Russian jet Tuesday, Turkish President Erdogan says Turkey will not remain silent in the face of border violations

25.11.2015
Erdogan says Turkey defended 'security, brothers’ rights'

ISTANBUL 

No one should expect from Turkey to remain silent in the face of constant violations of its border security and ignorance of its sovereignty, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Wednesday.

Erdogan made the remarks following Turkey’s downing of a Russian SU-24 warplane that violated Turkish airspace.

The Russian warplane was shot down at the Turkish-Syrian border after repeatedly ignoring warnings that it was violating Turkish airspace, according to the Turkish military.

Addressing the Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation of the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul, the president said: "Turkey does not want to escalate this incident [shooting down a warplane]. Turkey only defended its [border] security and its brothers’ rights."

Erdogan said that Ankara had previously conveyed its sensitivity regarding the violations and had done its best on its part to avoid such an incident.

"The only reason that such an incident did not take place before is Turkey’s good faith and its restraint. Turkey is not on the side of tension, crisis and animosity," he said.

On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the event will "bear serious consequences" for Turkish-Russian relations. He also claimed that Russian warplanes had been conducting an operation against Daesh in the north of Latakia in Syria.

However, the Turkish president rejected the Russian allegation of a Daesh presence in the north of Latakia , saying that Turkmen, not Daesh, lived in this region.

During his address, Erdogan called Daesh, al Qaeda, Boko Haram and al-Shabaab shadowy structures and criminal networks.

“Their priority is to kill those Muslims who do not share their views. They damaged Muslim countries, our values, the best work of our culture, libraries, scholars and schools,” Erdogan said, calling for a united front against these criminal networks.

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