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Kremlin cannot forecast whether Russian-Turkish relations will further deteriorate

February 16, 2016, 13:56 UTC+3

There's been immense tension in the relations of Russia and Turkey since the latter downed a Russian bomber over Syria in November

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© Anatoliy Strunin/TASS

MOSCOW, February 16. /TASS/. Moscow cannot forecast whether the relations between Russia and Turkey will complicate any further, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Tuesday.

"I would rather not answer this part of the question," Peskov said in response to a question whether further escalation is possible in Russian-Turkish relations. "The relations are in deep crisis," he added noting that "Russia regrets it." "We did not cause this crisis," the Kremlin spokesman reminded.

Russia-Turkey tensions

Relations between Russia and Turkey soured after an F-16 fighter jet from the Turkish Air Force shot down on November 24 a Russian Su-24M bomber, which was on anti-terrorism mission over Syria. Ankara claims the Su-24M bomber violated the Turkish air space in the area of the border with Syria, while Moscow maintains that the Su-24M plane stayed exclusively over the Syrian territory.

On November 28, the Russian president signed a decree on measure to ensure Russia’s national security and protect Russian citizens from criminal and other illegal actions and on the use of special economic measures in respect of Turkey.

The decree introduces visa regime starting January 1, 2016, prohibits charter flights between Russia and Turkey and obliges Russian travel operators against selling travel packages to Turkey. Visa restrictions, however, are not applicable to Turkish citizens, who have temporary sojourn permits or leaves to remain in Russia and those commissioned to work at diplomatic missions.

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