Athens, November 25, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency
Putin threatens with serious consequence
By Manolis Kostidis
The shooting down of the Russian fighter jet SU-24 by two Turkish fighter jets on the Syrian-Turkish border, is considered z major events that will disrupt relations between Moscow and Ankara and will have unforeseeable consequences.
At 09:18 am on Tuesday sounded the alarm in the Turkish capital when information arrived from the General Staff of Turkey that a russian fighter jet violated the turkish airspace. The Russians deny this accusation and stressed that the SU-24 was flying within the airspace of Syria.
According to the turkish view, the violation of the airspace by russian fighter continued until 09:22. Finally, at 09:24 with a decision taken by the prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu, turkish fighter jets shot down the SU-24 using air to air missiles and the two Russian pilots were killed.
The russian fighter jet fell within the Syrian border, in a territory controlled the Turkmen, who are fighting against the forces of Assad.
Chaos in the announcements
The first announcement was made to Anadolu Agency by staff of the presidency and declared that “a russian fighter jet was shot down”.
The General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces, however, announced that “turkish fighter jets shot down an unidentified aircraft that may have been russian”.
Later the palace clarified that “the aircraft that was shot down might have been russian”.
Because as a Turkish diplomat explained, it is one thing to know the nationality of the aircraft you are shooting down and another to down a fighter jet and then discover that it is russian.
In this case, Erdogan’s action to announce the nationality of the aircraft before the military leadership, is considered a “blunder” by experienced diplomats.
Putin: “Stop the support to jihadists”
Ahmet Davutoglou argued that “Turkey has the right to defend its borders”, since as Ankara reminded, it has previously warned that will activate the “rules of engagement” for violations of its airspace.
Vladimir Putin, however, reacted strongly and after threatening Turkey stressed that this incident will have serious consequences. For Putin, this action of Turkey was a “stab in the back by accomplices of terrorists”.
“Today’s tragic incident will have a major impact on Russian-Turkish relations. Instead of coming directly into contact with us, the Turks turned to their partners in NATO to discuss the incident. As if it was us who shot down their aircraft and not those ours! They want NATO to serve the Islamic State?”, he wondered.
Russian foreign minister Sergei Ivanov was scheduled to visit Ankara on Wednesday, but canceled his trip and recommended to the Russians “not to visit Turkey” and said that “the threat of terrorism there is no less than in Egypt”.
Why did Ankara choose to shoot down the aircraft instead of protesting to Moscow?
Experienced politicians and military analysts have pointed out that Turkey could have chosen not to have shot down the russian aircraft and that it could again protest in Moscow, if there was a violation of its airspace.
“It was a conscious choice”, they told us. People who a few days ago had talks with Recep Tayyip Erdogan, stressed that “the Turkish president is particularly annoyed by Assad’s alliance with Russia and Iran and considers them unreliable and suspicious”. They also stressed that the allegations of Putin to the G-20 that photographed Turkey as the country that supports the Islamic State, was the last straw.
Erdogan called on Tuesday evening an extraordinary meeting with the participation of Davutoglu, the head of intelligence Hakan Fidan, and the Chief of the Armed Forces Hulusi Akar.
In Turkey they fear that Moscow could retaliate by interrupting the flow of gas, causing serious repercussions in the country, since Turkey purchases 80% of its gas from Moscow. At the same time, the call of the Russian foreign ministry for the withdrawal of Russian citizens from Turkey are expected to have serious economic consequences. It remains unknown, however, what will happen with the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant, the construction of which was entrusted to the Russians, a project worth USD 25 billion.
Ankara was baking the Turkmen?
The Russian fighter jet was shot down in the Turkmen territory near Latakia, where Ankara was systematically protesting for russian bombardments in the region and accused Moscow and Damascus of striking against civilians. Information, however, says that members of the Grey Wolves and of the parastate have crossed the border and fight together with the Turkmen against the forces of Assad.
Military analysts say that Turkish citizens might have been at serious risk by the russian bombing, making the shooting down of the aircraft necessary.
The pilots are alive?
Latest information from the Turkish secret services is that Russian pilots have not been killed and efforts are being made to release them from the hands of the Turkmens.