Turkey, Russia should re-establish trust, Turkish FM says
Russia and Turkey should re-establish their trust-based relationship again, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Monday, Anadolu Agency reported.
In an interview with an Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, Cavusoglu said about the tense relations with Russia: "There is a limit to our patience".
Relations between Ankara and Moscow have been tense since a Russian fighter jet which violated Turkish airspace was shot down by Turkish forces after repeated warnings on Nov. 24.
Cavusoglu also touched upon the Russian warship's firing at a Turkish fishing vessel in the Aegean Sea on Sunday, saying: "Ours was only a fishing boat. Russian warship's reaction seems exaggerated to me".
On Sunday, Russia claimed sailors aboard the destroyer Smetlivy fired small arms as a warning to avoid a collision with a Turkish fishing vessel, some 22 kilometers (14 miles), off the coast of Greek island Lemnos.
The foreign minister said that Turkey was one of the first countries that put Daesh on the terrorist organizations list in October 2013.
"Finally, many countries have realized how dangerous Daesh is, as Turkey has been saying for years," Cavusoglu said.
He said that only air operations against Daesh were not sufficient and highlighted the need for ground operations.
"Regrettably, Russia does not struggle against terrorists in Syria. Figures show that eight percent of the Russian air operations are against Daesh while 92 percent of them are against Turkmen and Syrian oppositions," he said.
Russia began air operations in Syria on Sept. 30 with the aim of supporting the embattled regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
While the Kremlin says airstrikes target the Daesh militant group, some members of the western NATO alliance believe Russia is targeting groups opposed to Assad, including some that enjoy U.S. and Turkish support.
At least 250,000 people have been killed since the Syria conflict began in 2011, according to UN figures.