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Putin: 'Allah punished Turkey by depriving them of reason'

Erdogan and Putin's relationship has turned decidedly frosty in recent weeks [Getty]

Date of publication: 3 December, 2015

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Analysis: The ongoing tension between Moscow and Ankara has now turned personal, as Putin aims insults at Erdogan.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin has warned Turkey that it will be made to "regret" the downing of one of its war planes on 24 November, which left a pilot dead.

The remark comes after Ankara presented its condolences for the death of a Russian pilot, after weeks of bitter arguments.

Moscow has hit back against the NATO member by freezing talks on a major gas pipeline and announcing a series of economic sanctions.

Turkish visitors now for the first time in years require visas to visit Russia.

"We will not rattle our sabres. But if someone thinks that after committing heinous war crimes, the murder of our people, it will end with (an embargo on) tomatoes and limitations in construction and other fields then they are deeply mistaken," Putin said.
     We will not stop reminding them of what they did and they will not stop regretting their actions
 - Vladimir Putin


"We will not stop reminding them of what they did and they will not stop regretting their actions."

Russia has also alleged that Turkish President Recept Tayyip Erdogan and his family are involved in the illegal trading of oil with the Islamic State group.

"We will not forget this complicity with terrorists. We always considered and will always consider treachery to be the ultimate and lowest act," Putin said.

"We know for example who in Turkey fills their pockets and allows terrorists to make money from the stolen oil in Syria."

Erdogan fired back saying he had "proof" Moscow was involved in trade with the extremist group.

"We have the proof in our hands. We will reveal it to the world," the Turkish leader said during a televised speech.

The only small sign that tensions might thaw came when Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu held talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Belgrade. 
Read more on the Russia-Turkey crisis over Syria
- NATO calls extraordinary meeting after Turkey downs Russian jet
- Russia jet in Turkish airspace 'was not the first'
- What was Russia's airforce doing near Turkey's borders anyway?
- Who are the Turkmen?
- Comment: Showdown on the Syrian border


He then presented his condolences for the death of a Russian pilot in what Ankara insists was Turkish airspace.

"We expressed our sadness and expressed our condolences for the Russian pilot who lost his life," Cavusoglu said in the Serbian capital.

But despite meeting his Russian counterpart he warned that it would be "unrealistic" to expect that the spat was over.

Cavusoglu also stopped short of issuing an apology, which could continue to gnaw at relations between the two powers, which are at their most tense since the Cold War.
"We met with the head of the Turkish Foreign Ministry on his insistent request," said Lavrov. "We heard nothing new."

The Turkish foreign minister said it was unrealistic to expect the problems with Russia to be solved in one meeting, but it was important to open a communication channel.

Turkey's foreign minister added: "We expect the recovery of the relationship with patience, but we also need to know that it cannot go like this forever."

Regrets

What is probably most worrying, some analysts have said, is how quickly disagreements between the two parties have descended into mud-slinging.

This is a particularly potent point given the ongoing tensions regarding Russia's bombing of Turkish-backed rebel allies in northern Syria.
     Evidently Allah decided to punish the ruling clique in Turkey by depriving them of their intelligence and reason
- Vladimir Putin


Erdogan has also been one of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's most vocal critics throughout the four-year war in Syria, while Moscow has remained loyal to the dictator.

Putin also snubbed Erdogan at a UN climate summit in Paris on Monday.

One of the most serious signs of detachment between the two was the suspension of talks regarding the TurkStream pipeline project, which wil see Russian gas piped to Turkey under the Black Sea.

This was seen as a groundbreaking deal between the two countries, and one that would have huge financial rewards for both parties.

Erdogan and Putin both carry huge political weight in their respective countries. 

Arguments between the two strongmen - who until recently had a close relationship - have a huge impact on relations in general between the two countries.

This matters when Putin - knowing the pious and conservative nature of his Muslim counterpart - throws around insults like this:

"Only Allah, most likely, knows why they did this. And evidently Allah decided to punish the ruling clique in Turkey by depriving them of their intelligence and reason."

It shows that there can be few signs of a breakthrough between the two countries when there is such obvious animosity between the two presidents.

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