12:38 GMT17 April 2021
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    Russian Su-24 Jet Downed Over Syria (276)

    Russia may resume visa-free travel with Turkey if Ankara stops helping the Islamic State terrorists, the head of the State Duma’s international affairs committee said on Friday.

    Russia has decided to suspend the visa-free regime with Turkey from the January 1, 2016, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday after a meeting with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem in Moscow.

    “Relations between Russia and Turkey are the main factor here… If Ankara continues its de-facto support for ISIL militants, provides them with everything they need and endorses their actions in Syria, then we will not be able to restore the visa-free regime,” Alexei Pushkov said at a news briefing in Moscow.

    Driving the Islamic State militants out of the territories they now control in Iraq and Syria would help lessen the threat they pose to the rest of the world.

    Destroying the ISIL headquarters would facilitate our joint fight against the terrorist threat, Pushkov added.

    “The terrorists use Turkish territory as a transit zone to bring reinforcements and arms to the conflict zone in Syria. Some of these militants may be sent to carry out terrorist attacks here in Russia, so our decision to suspend the visa-free regime with Turkey will help keep them out. This is exactly what the French did after the Paris attacks and the EU is now considering a closure of its external borders in the face of the terrorist threat,” Pushkov noted.

    Russian Su-24 Jet Downed Over Syria (276)


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