Putin: Turkish Leadership Purposefully Pursues Islamisation of CountryRussia | November 25, 2015, Wednesday // 14:01| views
Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Sergei Ivanov (L) attend a meeting of the State Council Presidium on the state import substitution policy in Russian regions in Nizhny Tagil, Russia, 25 November
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that the current Turkish leadership has purposefully pursued the Islamisation of the country for a number of years.
Putin made it clear that Islam was a great world religion and one of the traditional ones, including in Russia.
The Russian president assured that Russia supports Islam and will continue to do so, with the problem being in the support of a more radical branch of the religion.
He warned that Russian citizens staying in Turkey could be facing serious danger and reminded the advice of the Foreign Ministry towards Russians to refrain from visiting Turkey.
The comments of Putin come in response to the downing of Russian Su-24 warplane by Turkey near the Turkish-Syrian border on Tuesday.
Ankara claims that the Russian aircraft had violated Turkish airspace and had been warned ten times before being shot down, while Moscow maintains that the airplane was in Syrian airspace.
The warplane was brought down by an air-to-air missile launched by a Turkish F-16 fighter jet. Both pilots managed to eject themselves, but one of them was killed midair by gunfire from the ground.
The other pilot was rescued by Russian and Syrian forces and brought to safety to a Russian airbase in the region.
On Tuesday, Putin said that the incident will have negative consequences on the relations between the two countries.
On Wednesday, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev blamed Turkey for worsening the relations between Russia and NATO.