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    Russian President Vladimir Putin at the ceremony to pay last respects to Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov, at the Russian Foreign Ministry. The ambassador was assassinated in Ankara

    Putin Calls Ambassador Karlov’s Murder ‘Assault’ on Russia-Turkey Ties

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    Putin's 2016 Annual Year-End Press Conference (72)
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday described the murder of the country’s ambassador in Ankara as an assault on Russia and its ties with Turkey.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov was shot dead by off-duty Turkish police officer Mevlut Mert Altintas on Monday at the opening of an art gallery exhibition in the Turkish capital.

    "This was primarily an assault on Russia and Russian-Turkish relations. Frankly, I used to be skeptical about claims that our jet was shot down [in Syria in November 2015] without an order from Turkey’s top leadership but rather by people who wanted to damage Russian-Turkish ties," Putin said at the annual press conference.

    "But the attack on the ambassador by a special operations officer got me thinking: I feel now it is possible that destructive elements could have found their way into social structures, including the law enforcement and the army," he admitted.

    "Will this undermine the Russian-Turkish relationship? No, it won’t because we realize the importance of Russian-Turkish ties and will make every effort to deepen them," Putin vowed.

    Topic:
    Putin's 2016 Annual Year-End Press Conference (72)

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    ties, Andrey Karlov, Vladimir Putin, Turkey, Russia
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