Russia to Suspend Visa-free Travel Regime with Turkey from 2016Russia | November 27, 2015, Friday // 18:52| views
Rusian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attends a joint press conference with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem (not pictured) during a press conference after their meeting in the Foreign Mninistry guest house in Moscow, Russia, 27 November 2015. EPA/BG
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said that Russia will suspend its visa-free regime with Turkey from the beginning of next year.
"This is directly linked with the security of Russia and our citizens," TASS quoted Lavrov as saying following a meeting with Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid Muallem in Moscow.
Lavrov said that Moscow was concerned about “a well-run traffic of gunmen via Turkey in various directions”.
The decision comes in the wake of a recommendation to Russian tourists not to visit Turkey following Tuesday’s downing of a Russian warplane by a Turkish jet fighter in the border area between Turkey and Syria.
The head of Russia’s federal tourism agency Rostourism Oleg Safonov said on Wednesday that they had received a recommendation from the Russian Foreign Ministry to refrain from visits to Turkey “as terrorism threat there is no less than in Egypt."
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the suspension of all passenger flights to Egypt earlier this month following the crash of Russian Airbus A321 plane in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula on October 31. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for bringing down the aircraft.
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