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Putin: A lot must be done before ties with Turkey fully normalized

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) meets with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin ahead of the G20 Summit in Hangzhou, China, September 3, 2016. (Photos by Reuters)

Russian President Vladimir Putin says a lot of ground must be covered until relations between Moscow and Ankara are fully healed.

Relations between Russia and Turkey soured after Turkey downed a Russian jet close to the Syrian border in 2015.  

"There is still a lot to do in order to completely re-establish cooperation in all areas," said Putin following a bilateral meeting with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the southern Chinese city of Hangzhou on Saturday ahead of a G20 summit.

"We see that Turkey is going through hard times; we are pleased that the political situation is returning to normal. We are aware that the country is fighting against terror and facing serious threats," he added.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (L) meets with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin ahead of the G20 Summit in Hangzhou, China, September 3, 2016.

Turkey has been plagued by a series of terrorist attacks over the last few years and recently foiled a coup attempt. It has also launched an incursion into the Syrian territory, where it claims is battling the Daesh terrorist group and Kurdish militants.

Putin went on to stress that "once the normalization is fully achieved, we will be able to move forward more quickly."

A combo taken from video shows a Sukhoi Su-24 fighter jet crashing in a mountainous area in northern Syria after it was shot down by Turkish fighter jets near the Syrian border on November 24, 2015. 

On November 24, Turkey shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber claiming that had entered Turkish airspace. At the time Putin referred to the incident as a “stab in the back” and imposed a series of economic sanctions on Ankara. Relations started to pick up after Erdogan apologized, “issuing deep regret.”  

In his turn, Erdogan noted that "certain measures" would be carried by both countries to forward normalization of ties.


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