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    Syrian men sit under a Turkish flag  in Gaziantep, southern Turkey (File)

    Ankara Expects Visa Liberalization With Russia, Boosting Bilateral Relations

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    Ankara hopes that its relations with Moscow will return to their former level.

    ANKARA (Sputnik) — Ankara expects the liberalization of the visa regime between Russia and Turkey and further enhancing of bilateral relations, local media reported Wednesday, citing a source in the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

    "Visa liberalization between Turkey and Russia is our expectation however they [the Russian side] have concerns due to security. However, I believe that visa free travel for businessmen and official delegations is a priority between the two," the source, speaking on conditions of anonymity, was quoted as saying by the Daily Sabah newspaper.

    The source added that Ankara was determined to return the relations with Moscow to their former level, noting that it was not supposed to be an alternative to relations with the Western countries, according to the newspaper.

    Russian-Turkish relations deteriorated after the downing of a Russian military plane by a Turkish fighter jet in Syria on November 24, 2015. Moscow imposed a number of restrictive measures on Turkey in response to the downing. A thaw in relations between Moscow and Ankara began in June following Turkey's apology to Russia.

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    Downing of Russian SU-24, Turkish foreign ministry, Russia, Turkey
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