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Lawmaker: Inter-parliamentarian contacts between Russia and Turkey may resume in September

August 02, 2016, 12:38 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. Chairman of the Russian Federation Council’s International Affairs Committee Konstantin Kosachev hopes that contacts between parliaments of Russia and Turkey will resume in the autumn but no signals on activating relations have been received so far.

"We have not yet received such signals but I think this is due to the vacation season," Kosachev told TASS on Tuesday. "I think that the Turkish parliament is currently in between the sessions, and there is just no one there who can step forward with a relevant initiative," he added noting that "there is no politics" in the silence of the Turkish side.

"After the presidents agreed to normalize relations, we publicly stated our readiness to fulfill this normalization on the parliamentarian track as well," the lawmaker said. "We expect signals from our Turkish partners. I think we will resume work in September. I am confident that such (inter-parliamentarian) contacts will resume as well," he concluded.

On June 27, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent Russian President Vladimir Putin a message in which he apologized for the downed Su-24 plane and "underscored the readiness to do everything possible for restoration of the traditionally friendly relations between Turkey and Russia."

On June 29, the presidents had a telephone conversation - first in the past seven months, where they agreed to consider a meeting. After the conversation, Putin ordered the government to begin discussions with Ankara for resuming cooperation in trade and other spheres.

The Turkish Air Force’s F-16 fighter on November 24, 2015 shot down a Russian Sukhoi Su-24M bomber, involved in Russia's antiterrorism operation in Syria, that Ankara claimed violated the country’s airspace on the border with Syria.

Russia’s Defense Ministry said the Su-24M was above Syrian territory and "there was no violation of Turkey’s airspace." Pilot Oleg Peshkov was killed by militants from the ground after ejecting, the second pilot was rescued and taken to the Russian base. The incident resulted in the severing of nearly all trade and economic ties between the two countries. Ankara refused to apologize for the downed jet and death of the pilot. Moscow put the blame for the incident on the Turkish authorities.

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