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    Mevlut Cavusoglu gave an exclusive interview to Sputnik

    Level of Russian-Turkish Relations Still Not Fully Restored - Turkish FM

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    Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Russia and Turkey had disagreements on Syrian President Bashar Assad, but Moscow and Ankara were discussing the issue of Syria.

    ANKARA (Sputnik) — Russian-Turkish relations, deteriorated after the incident with Turkey’s downing of a Russian aircraft over Syria, have not normalized yet, though both countries are determined to improve them, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Wednesday.

    "The relations have not still reached the level that was before the incident with the plane. But there is determination to improve them, mechanisms have been developed, there is frequent communication and meetings," Cavusoglu told journalists.

    He added that Russia and Turkey had disagreements on Syrian President Bashar Assad, but Moscow and Ankara were discussing the issue of Syria.

    "Our relations with Russia, in the same way as before, are not an alternative to our relations with other countries, for example, with the European Union, Europe, and so forth. These are two different things," Cavusoglu said.

    On November 24, 2015, Turkey downed a Russian Su-24 plane, with two pilots on board, over Syria. Following the incident, relations between Russia and Turkey deteriorated, with Moscow demanding that Ankara apologize for downing the plane and cover any associated material losses to the country and the pilot's family. In June, following Turkey's apology to Russia for the November incident, the sides began a reconciliation process.

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    Syrian crisis, Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey, Syria, Russia
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