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Moscow not to sweep issues of concern with Turkey under rug — ministry

July 07, 2016, 14:00 UTC+3

The normalization of ties is underway but some threats and concerns remain

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© Valeriy Sharifulin/TASS

ARTEK (Yalta), July 7. /TASS/. The normalization of relations with Turkey does not mean that Russia will sweep the outstanding issues on the bilateral agenda under the carpet, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.

"The normalization of relations does not remove the existing points of contention from the agenda," she said. 

"If the terrorists we are pursuing are in Turkey, we will pursue them just the same, we will seek their extradition," she said. "We do not want anyone to have any illusions that we are going to sweep the outstanding issues under the carpet instead of addressing them. Nothing of the kind."

Zakharova added that terrorist threat for tourists in Turkey is still there, the Russian authorities constantly warn about this.

"Indeed, the normalization of the political dialogue is underway, but we are talking about the persisting terrorist threat for tourists," Zakharova said. "We have never stopped speaking about this.This is the responsibility of every individual citizen travelling to Turkey."

The absence of direct political contacts directly affected military-to-military contacts. The political normalization will lead to the normalization in other areas, including the fight against terrorism," the diplomat said.

Work in the UN SC on the Syrian-Turkish border issue

The diplomat went on to say that Russia continues to be concerned about the situation on the Syrian-Turkish border.

"When we started to say publicly that we are worried about the situation on the Syrian-Turkish border and the support of gunmen of ISIL (former name of the Islamic State terrorist group outlawed in Russia - TASS), we have always emphasized that we had this information before," the diplomat said. "We said that we had always brought it to the notice of both the Turkish side and our colleagues in the International Syria Support Group. We never said that this information appeared only when a tragic incident in our bilateral relations occurred."

"This information has always been available, and we used it. We just did not make it public the way we began to do. We tried to bring to the notice of the world community using all available diplomatic means that such policy with regard to both Syria and terrorism is unacceptable," Zakharova said. "This information is still there, and we continue working on it, including in the UN Security Council."

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