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Moscow expresses protest to Swiss ambassador over incident with Russian plane

October 20, 2015, 16:45 UTC+3
Resolute protest was presented to the Swiss diplomat over ‘air police’ control of the Russian civil plane by the Swiss air force, of which the Russian side was not informed in advance
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Swiss ambassador to Moscow Pierre Helg

Swiss ambassador to Moscow Pierre Helg

© ITAR-TASS/Yuri Mashkov

MOSCOW, October 20. /TASS/. Russia’s Foreign Ministry on Tuesday presented resolute protest to Swiss Ambassador to Moscow Pierre Helg over the Monday incident with Russian plane carrying a Russian parliamentary delegation and called on Bern to refrain from such risky actions.

"In connection with the October 19 incident when a Swiss fighter plane F/A-18 closely approached a Russian plane carrying a Russian parliamentary delegation led by speaker of the Russian State Duma [lower parliament house] Sergey Naryshkin, who were to take part in the 133rd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union in Geneva, in Swiss airspace over the city of Biel, the Russian foreign ministry made an official representation to Swiss Ambassador to Moscow Pierre Helg," the ministry said.

"Resolute protest was presented to the Swiss diplomat over ‘air police’ control of the Russian civil plane by the Swiss air force, of which the Russian side was not informed in advance," the ministry said. "Attempts made by some Swiss officials to present the incident as a routine control procedure or as ‘escorting the Russian plane as a manifestation of hospitality’ for the Russian parliament look unconvincing. In any case, such steps should be agreed in advance."

"Taking into account the fact that Switzerland has expressed its regret, we call on Bern to refrain from such risky incidents and not call to question the country’s reputation as a venue for major international events," the ministry said.

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