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Lavrov Says 'Nothing New' After Meeting Turkish FM


Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Belgrade
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Belgrade

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he heard "nothing new" from his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu, after the two met on the sidelines of an Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) meeting in Belgrade.

The 40-minute meeting on December 3 was the first high-level bilateral talks between Russia and Turkey since the shooting down of a Russian warplane by a Turkish jet on November 24.

Cavusoglu was quoted as saying that it was "unrealistic" to expect all problems between Ankara and Moscow to be resolved in one meeting but that it is important to keep lines of communication open.

Relations between Ankara and Moscow plunged to new lows after the downing of the plane.

Russia has insisted that Turkey apologize for the incident, in which one Russian pilot was killed.

Turkey has said it will not apologize for defending its territory and that Russia should admit the warplane crossed into Turkish airspace and was warned before it was fired upon.

Earlier on December 3, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu accused Russia of engaging in tactics reminiscent of the Soviet era.

"No one gives credit to the lies of the Soviet propaganda machine," Davutolgu said in Ankara.

Russia has accused Turkey of aiding terrorists in Syria and of buying oil from Islamic State, thereby helping to finance the extremist group.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was directly accused by Moscow of taking part in the illegal oil trade, has strongly rejected the charges and said Russians had profited from the sale of IS oil.

Based on reporting by AFP, Reuters, and Interfax

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