MOSCOW, October 12 (RIA Novosti)
Russia's foreign minister said on Friday that a Moscow-Damascus passenger airliner forced to land in Turkey over suspicions it had weapons on board was legally carrying Russian radar parts.
Turkish F-16 fighter jets forced down the Syrian Air Airbus A320 some three hours after it had taken off from Moscow's Vnukovo international airport late on Wednesday. Turkey eventually permitted the A320 to resume its flight after a five-hour inspection of the aircraft that resulted in the seizure of a number of items.
"We have no secrets," Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told journalists after meeting President Vladimir Putin near Moscow. "There were, of course, no weapons on board and there could not have been."
Lavrov also stressed the delivery was "entirely legal" and that Russia would demand both the return of the equipment and an explanation from Turkey.
But he also said the "radar station equipment" was "dual purpose," meaning it could have both civilian and military applications.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday the intercepted plane was carrying Russian-made military gear and ammunition destined for the Syrian military, but Syria’s Foreign Ministry said the jet had no weapons or illegal items on board.
Moscow has repeatedly blocked international sanctions against the embattled regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad over what it says is a pro-rebel bias. Tens of thousands of people have killed been since the outbreak of civil war in Syria in March 2011, according to opposition groups.
Russia has insisted that its ongoing arms deliveries to Syria are in accordance with international law.
Russia expressed a thinly veiled protest on Thursday at the grounding of the plane.
“We are concerned that the life and security of the passengers, including 17 Russian nationals, was endangered,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said. He also said that Turkey had not informed Russia that its nationals were on board and that Russian embassy officials and doctors had been denied access to the plane.
“Russia insists on an explanation of such behavior with regard to the Russian nationals and demands that measures be taken to prevent any such incidents happening in the future,” he said.
The United States said that it supported Turkey’s decision to force the plane down and indicated it would raise the matter with Russia.
“We strongly support the government of Turkey’s decision to inspect the plane,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said, adding that Washington was “concerned by any effort to supply military equipment to the Assad regime.”
The episode was likely to come up in bilateral discussions between US and Russian officials, she added.
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- email@example.comNATO11:24, 12/10/2012Turkey, and Erdogan are ordianry liars, as usual, because according to their religion they can lie if it helps their cause.
- mrgenieShortsighted13:25, 12/10/2012As if you need a religion to lie. How many people in Russia don't lie on their tax declaration? If we see the wealth of the highest rank in Russia, everyone know this can't be achieved with the official payment of 8000 USD/month! So, that officially makes the highest rank in Russia an official accepted and confirmed liar. Since Assad is also, as you claim, bound to lie by religion, we have here a club of liars in which everyone is lying about liars and they even lie about the lying. So who's not a liar? :P
- bielecWho is the criminal?16:24, 12/10/2012Americans sell weapons all over the world... Turkey is harbouring, arming, training and protecting foreign mercenaries who commit atrocities in Syria... NATO supports terrorists who destabilize independent states. These are crimes much greater than one alleged cargo of ammunition addressed to a legitimate government of a sovereign country.
It's time for Russia to become more active in tageting Turkish, Saudi and Qatari deliveries to the criminal rebels operating in Syria.
BTW, this action is one of many recent Turkish provocations deliberately delivered to bring about Syrian response that could be used by NATO as a pretext for humanitarian bombing of Syria and its people. Both Turkey and the criminal Syrian rebels need NATO's intervention. This is a crime, too. Erdogan is an international criminal.
- mrgenieDear Bielec22:17, 12/10/2012Lets look at the events on a synchronized time-frame.
1) Scholars protested against Assad with graffiti.
2) Instead of having a talk with their parents, force is used. People get into prison for political reasons.
3) the opposition however is still friendly in it's protests. No weapons are used.
4) The first shots are ordered by V. Putin and Assad. People get shot by V. Putin and Assad.
5) this is now after Putin and Assad opened fire on the public escalating, people getting killed by security forces is forcing the opposition to defend itself.
6) The opposition is in a weaker position, more and heavier weapons are used by V. Putin and Assad to kill woman and children, the opposition is still defending!
7) After enough woman and children got slaughtered by V. Putin and Assad, the opposition moves to the next stage from defending into offending!
8) there are still no religious fanatics in Syria active, at least not over the amount of 1%, since no reports of this are coming in. People are only targeting the troops of V. Putin and Assad.
10) The fight is not fair, V. Putin send Tanks, Rockets, etc to Assad and Assad is using them happily.
11) First now, other nations start to interfere. They ask Putin to stop the murder of civilians. V. Putin claims it's his right to kill all people worldwide, he even made a statement to have the right to throw nukes on woman and children in Europe as a precaution. Has the guy gone mad?
12) Since Putin says "no" to all request to stop this madness, foreign countries now start to supply the opposition also with weapons so they can defend their woman and children against V. Putin and his Puppet.
13) Meanwhile, terrorist from southern Russia, Afghanistan, Iraq, etc. are moving into the country to fight against the Russian backed army of Assad.
14) Syrian forces are opening fire on foreign nations: Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, etc. They all already got fire on their grounds.
15) NATO is strictly against a war and is begging Putin to stop the murdering
16) Putin repeated he has the right to kill all people worldwide, including Russians btw. who he considers dirty slaves as they were under the Tsars, since he's the new Tsar.
17) A Turkish plane was shot down by Russian weapons. NATO insists to Turkey it wants peace and tells the Turks not to go too high, meanwhile NATO is addressing Putin once again to stop the murdering.
18) Putin keeps killing woman and children, supporting his puppet, meanwhile, the attacking on other nations including turkey continues!
19) Putin is trying to see how far he can go.
20) After weeks of firing on other nations by Russian weapons, children in Turkey are now getting hit. Turkey is now furious.
21) Again, NATO doesn't want to escalate it and is begging again to Putin to stop it!
22) Putin however continues to deliver weapons, Russian weapons are still firing on Turkey, Lebanon and other countries.
23).. we will see what comes next.
once again, the opposition did NOT START using weapons!
Once again, NATO is BEGGING the TSAR to stop the killing!
Once again, NATO is BEGGING all Nations to stop hostilities.
Putin is continuing to say:"let's go on, no one should stop this" but he's disguising it under the motto:"no interference from abroad"
well, if that's his point, then stop the killing dear Tsar! You are the one with the finger on the trigger, pull that finger away from the trigger and stop this madness!
And you want to know why the Tsar loves this to escalate?
Russia at the moment is going bankrupt. It's going down just as Greece, and since Putin destroyed all of Russian innovation, development and industry, and he and his friends solely live on Oil and Gas prices, guess what's needed to rescue Russian economy? Exactly! A war in the oil and gas rich region of the Mid-east! It's make prices explode, and it can cover up all the mistakes Putin has made in Russia by making himself the richest man of this country with a worthless economy that's living on oil exports as a drug addict. And if woman and children have to die to achieve this, obviously the Tsar doesn't care, as long as his 48 Billion private stolen money are safe and increasing.
Happy afternoon thinking what I just wrote! You probably won't accept it, as the truth is obviously to hard for you to accept.
Oh btw, your Tsar doesn't love you, he is using and abusing you, you only don't want to see it.
Islamic terrorism is gaining momentum, and is all about ideological opposition to European Christian values. This is an aggressive young radical ideology that attracts followers across the world. And it will only grow stronger on the world political stage.