13:29 GMT13 May 2021
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    Sputnik news agency's Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan said Wednesday she hoped the thaw in Russian-Turkish relations would lead to Ankara reconsidering its decision to block the Sputnik website in the country.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The website of Sputnik's Turkish bureau was blocked on April 14 by the Turkish telecommunications regulator. Turkey's Golbasi District court backed the decision. The chief editor of Sputnik’s Turkish bureau, Tural Kerimov, was denied entry to Turkey, stripped of his accreditation and residence permit in the country.

    "The decision to block Sputnik in Turkey was obviously wrong, violating the principle of media freedom, and evidently politicized. We hope that the agreement between Russian and Turkish leaders will lead to the restoration of good relations between our countries and journalists will be able to work normally again," Simonyan told Sputnik.

    The Turkish bureau is publishing materials on its Facebook page after its website was blocked. The links to Sputnik articles on Facebook are also posted on Twitter. Sputnik's apps for iOS and Android devices are still working, allowing Turkish audience access to the agency's materials.

    On Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin to express regret and condolences for the November 2015 downing of a Russian Su-24 bomber in Syria by Turkey. On Wednesday, the two leaders had a phone conversation for the first time in more than seven months. Following the talks with Erdogan, Putin ordered the government to prepare to lift administrative restrictions against Turkey in tourism field.

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    Sputnik, Margarita Simonyan, Russia, Turkey
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