Ankara said on Wednesday that it is not acting in an aggressive way towards Moscow, amid tense relations between the two countries following Turkey’s downing of a Russian fighter jet last month.
“The Russian military has been acting for some time as if there is a perceived threat from Turkey to them, which is an exaggerated situation and has nothing to do with reality,” Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic told a press conference, Xinhua reported.
He also vowed that Turkey would not shoot down any more Russian warplanes if they stop violating Turkish airspace.
“If the Russian Federation also guarantees that there will not be any airspace violations, a similar incident will not happen again,” Bilgic said in an apparent response to remarks by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov.
Earlier in the day, Meshkov said Turkey should guarantee that a similar incident will not happen in the future.
The Turkish spokesman also rejected Meshkov’s call for Turkey to pay compensation for downing the Russian military plane.
“The Russian airplane was shot down because it violated our airspace,” Bilgic said. “Meeting the Russian side’s demands is not possible.”
Ties between Ankara and Moscow have soured after Turkey shot down a Russian fighter jet on November 24 near the border, saying that it violated Turkish airspace.
However, Moscow vehemently denied the claim and insisted that the Su-24 fighter jet stayed over Syria during its flight.