The Russian Defense Ministry has accused Turkey and its allies of manipulating the media to hide the truth. According to the ministry, NATO refused to provide proof on allegations that Russia violated Turkish airspace citing the information classified.
“It is no coincidence that Turkey, after its loud outbursts towards Russia, is so persistent in involving NATO in this murky story. It’s absolutely clear to us that the information has been ‘classified’ not from us, but from the public and media, particularly those from Western countries and the US, which have been manipulated by their Turkish partners,” RT quoted Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov.
In the previous week, Turkey called for Russia’s ambassador, claiming that its Su-34 strike fighter breached the nation’s airspace. Moscow refuted the claims. While Russia has been conducting a military campaign in Syria against identified enemies, it denies violating Ankara’s airspace. Moscow also said that Turkey still has yet to provide evidence of the violation.
The relations among the two nations are in its worse since Turkey’s downing of a Russian jet in November last year. Turkey downed Russia’s Su-24 Fencer that reportedly flew over the Turkish border for around eighteen seconds. The tensions had escalated to a boiling point especially that Turkey immediately sought the protection of NATO after the incident instead of reaching out to President Vladimir Putin. Turkey is a staunch US and NATO ally. The Alliance can invoke Article 5 anytime. This states that an attack to an ally is an attack to all.
NATO requested both sides to remain calm over last week’s allegations. The Alliance also added that images proving Russia’s jet flew over Turkey’s airspaces were placed under classified. Konashenkov on the other hand expressed that the ministry did not expect for the outcome to be any different. Russia always does its part to provide any evidence deemed necessary while Turkey has so far did otherwise.
Nonetheless, despite the tensions brewing with Ankara, Russia still continued to deploy at least four advanced Sukhoi Su-35S Flanker-E planes to Syria to strengthen its air capabilities over the highly conflicted region. “Starting from last week, super-maneuverable Su-35S fighter jets started performing combat missions at Khmeimim airbase,” TASS quoted Konashenkov.