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Turkey ready to consider compensation to killed Russian pilot's family — spokesman
The issue of compensation for the death of Su-24 Russian pilot Oleg Peshkov may be considered should a relevant request from Peshkov's relatives be submitted, Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin told journalists.
"We are ready to take required steps to, as is written in the letter of President [Tayyip Erdogan] 'alleviate the pain of the family [of the killed pilot].' If the family submits a relevant request, we will certainly assess it from the human point of view. No such request has been received yet," said Kalin, whose words were broadcast by the NTV channel.
He said "words of apology were conveyed in the letter to the pilot's family."
"This is a very humane deed. Whatever happened there, a person died, and the president expressed condolences to his family. And the fact that they were accepted by the Russian side made us happy," Kalin said.
The spokesman added that "on this basis, the sides may assess the prospects from the viewpoint of what should be done next to normalize relations."
According to the official, Turkey and Russia, thanks to normalization of relations, will be able to discuss, by means of dialogue, the issues of Syria, Ukraine and Crimea.
Kalin said the countries would "open a new page for discussion of Syria, Ukraine, Crimea and other regional issues."
On Monday, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan sent Russian President Vladimir Putin a message in which he apologized for the downed Su-24 plane and "underscored the readiness to do everything possible for restoration of the traditionally friendly relations between Turkey and Russia."
The Turkish Air Force's F-16 fighter on November 24, 2015 shot down a Russian Sukhoi Su-24M bomber, involved in Russia's antiterrorism operation in Syria, that Ankara claimed violated the country's airspace on the border with Syria.
Russia's Defense Ministry said the Su-24M was above Syrian territory and "there was no violation of Turkey's airspace."
Pilot Oleg Peshkov was killed by militants from the ground after ejecting, the second pilot was rescued and taken to the Russian base.
The incident resulted in the severing of nearly all trade and economic ties between the two countries. Ankara refused to apologize for the downed jet and death of the pilot. Moscow put the blame for the incident on the Turkish authorities.
[Source: Itar Tass, Ankara, 28Jun16]
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