03:12 GMT06 August 2021
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    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow will suspend the visa-free regime with Turkey starting January 1, 2016.

    Lavrov said during a joint press conference with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem that Russia would suspend the visa-free regime with Turkey.

    "The Russian government reached a decision to suspend the free-visa regime between Russia and the Turkish Republic. The decision will come into effect on January 1 2016," Lavrov said at a press-conference after talks with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem.

    The Russian minister added that threats coming from Turkey were "not artificial."

    "On the contrary, these threats are very real, and we are saying this with full responsibility," he underscored.

    The move comes as Russia started to question Ankara's commitment to the fight against terrorism following the downing of a Russian Su-24 bomber on Tuesday by the Turkish Air Force over Syria.

    Earlier, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated that the incident would negatively affect all aspects of relations between Moscow and Ankara and recommended Russians to refrain from visiting Turkey. Cooperation in the tourism industry between Moscow and Ankara may be stopped, the Russian Federal Tourism Agency said.


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