Zarif: Downing of Russian Fighter Sends Wrong Signal

Zarif: Downing of Russian Fighter Sends Wrong SignalZarif: Downing of Russian Fighter Sends Wrong Signal

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the Turkish shooting down of a Russian fighter jet on Tuesday would convey a wrong message to terrorist groups and further complicate the Syria crisis.

In a phone conversation with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Tuesday night, Zarif expressed concern over the recent incident near the Turkey-Syria border, IRNA quoted Foreign Ministry spokesman, Hossein Jaber Ansari, as saying.

Turkey shot down a Russian Su-24 close to the Syrian border, accusing it of violating Turkish airspace, while the Russian Defense Ministry denies that the airspace violation took place.

"The incident, one again, showed the sensitivity of the situation in Syria, the conflict's effect on global peace and security, and the necessity of adopting a united approach against terrorism," Ansari said.

"Such actions, which escalate tension and complicate the problem, will lead terrorists to think they can benefit from discord between important players and continue to commit crimes against Syrians and other nations."

The spokesman added that the success of efforts to root out terrorism depends on the regional and international determination to fight the scourge.

President Hassan Rouhani, speaking in the Wednesday's Cabinet meeting, pointed to escalated tensions between Russia and Turkey over the incident, calling them to show restraint.

The Russian Defense Ministry said it can prove the aircraft was in Syria during its entire flight. This is while the Turkish military said the plane was warned “10 times” before it was shot down for violating Turkish airspace, killing at least one of the two pilots.

Russian President Vladimir Putin denounced what he called a "stab in the back" and warned of "significant consequences".