Friday, November 27, 2015

Turkish Suspension

"TASS: Lavrov says Russia will suspend visa-free regime with Turkey in 2016"
Russia has decided to suspend the visa-free regime with Turkey from the beginning of 2016, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday after a meeting with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem in Moscow, according to Russian news agency TASS.  "Russia's leadership has taken a decision to suspend the visa-free regime between Russia and Turkey. This decision will come into force from January 1," Lavrov said, TASS wrote. Lavrov reiterated that Russia had been concerned about growing terrorist threats coming from Turkey. "This is directly linked with the security of Russia and our citizens," he said. "There is a well-run traffic of gunmen via Turkey in various directions," he said, adding that Turkey has been reluctant to tell Russia about the cooperation in this issue. "These are not farfetched threats – these are quite real threats," Lavrov stressed. The visa-free regime between Russia and Turkey was introduced in 2011. The Russian-Turkish relations became tense after a Turkish F-16 fighter jet downed a Russian Su-24 frontline bomber on Tuesday. Turkey insists that the Russian aircraft had violated its airspace, while the Russian side denies that. The Russian customs houses have already started blocking imports from Turkey, and the Russian government announced it would present on November 28 a list of sanctions that might be introduced against Turkey.

^ While I do not know for sure if Turkey had given the Russian plane warning that it ignored before it was shot down I do know that Russia continues to self-isolate itself from the rest of the world and now Russians have one less country they will be able to visit without a visa.  Turks tend to go to Germany and the EU and not to Russia for vacation/work while Russians flocked to Turkey . ^

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