Russia to Turkey: No apology, no Erdogan-Putin meeting

Russia to Turkey: No apology, no Erdogan-Putin meeting
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Russia to Turkey: No apology, no Erdogan-Putin meeting
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Updated 28 November 2015

Russia to Turkey: No apology, no Erdogan-Putin meeting

Russia to Turkey: No apology, no Erdogan-Putin meeting

MOSCOW: Russian President Vladimir Putin has refused to contact Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan because Ankara does not want to apologize for the downing of a Russian warplane, Yuri Ushakov, Putin’s aide, said on Friday.
“We see Turkey’s unwillingness to simply apologize for the incident with the plane,” Ushakov told reporters when asked why Putin has refused to talk with Erdogan.
On Thursday, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan was quoted as saying, Russia should apologize for violating Turkey’s airspace.
Ushakov said the Kremlin had received a request from Ankara regarding a possible meeting between the two leaders at a climate conference in Paris on Nov. 30 and that Putin would be informed about it later on Friday.
In Paris, Putin will meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss the Syrian crisis and Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He will also meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel for talks about Syria and Ukraine, Ushakov said.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also said on Friday that Moscow had questions whether Turkey had real intentions to fight terrorism.
“We have more and more questions about the activity of Ankara and its real commitment to eradicating terrorism,” Lavrov told a news conference after meeting his Syrian counterpart Walid Al-Moualem in Moscow.
In Bucharest, Russia’s lower house speaker Sergei Naryshkin said his country has the right to make a military response to Turkey.
Speaking in an interview with Romanian television station Digi24, Naryshkin, who spoke in Russian and was translated by the broadcaster, said: “This is intentional murder of our soldiers and this deed must be punished.”
The shooting down of the Russian warplane by the Turkish air force on Tuesday was one of the most serious clashes between a NATO member and Russia, and further complicated international efforts to battle Daesh militants.
“We know those who did this and they must be judged. At the same time, the response from the Russian side will surely follow, in line with international law. And aside from this, Russia has also the right to military response,” added Naryshkin, who was attending a meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (PABSEC) in Bucharest.
Naryshkin, who said economic measures against Turkey might be on the cards, said Moscow had allocated additional military resources on Thursday to boost the security of Russian warplanes.
“Even yesterday, military resources were allocated, (for) the S400 Triumph, which is the most advanced missile defense system, with the role to maintain flight safety of Russian planes, of our military and air forces whose task is to destroy terrorist infrastructure of the so-called Islamic State and other organizations operating in Syria.”
World leaders have urged both sides to avoid escalation, and China’s Foreign Ministry added its voice to that on Friday.


Israeli police prevent Dome of the Rock repairs

Israeli police prevent Dome of the Rock repairs
This picture shows the Dome of the Rock at the al-Aqsa mosque compound in the Jerusalem's Old City on July 27, 2018, after the site was reopened. (AFP)
Updated 56 min 35 sec ago

Israeli police prevent Dome of the Rock repairs

Israeli police prevent Dome of the Rock repairs
  • Council set to denounce action that is ‘violation of understandings’

AMMAN: Israeli police have stopped workers from the Jerusalem Islamic Waqf from renovating the Dome of the Rock for two consecutive days, raising tensions in the old city.

Azzam Khatib, director of the Jordanian Waqf department in Jerusalem, informed Jordan’s Ambassador in Tel Aviv Ghassan Majali and Minister of Waqf in Amman Mohammed Khalaileh of the news.

Israeli officials claim the decision was made after an individual tried to renovate the ceiling of the Bab Al-Rahmeh mosque, which Israel has demanded Muslims to vacate, without reason.

The Jerusalem Waqf Council is expected to issue a strong statement denouncing the Israeli action, calling it a violation of understandings.

Bassam Hallaq, the Waqf engineer in charge of the renovation, said that Israeli police stopped work on the gold-plated Dome of the Rock on Saturday and Sunday, and prevented urgent electric work, too.

Israel insists that any renovation or repair must be pre-approved. The renovation is not structural.

Arab News has learned that the Israeli actions on Saturday and Sunday followed the efforts of an unknown Palestinian whose face was covered, who climbed the roof of the Bab Al-Rahmeh mosque in order to apply cement to stop leaks.

Israel has forbidden any repair work on the mosque.

Hallaq said that all repair work in the entire Al-Aqsa compound has also been suspended by Israel.

The mosque’s engineer insists that the Waqf has no cement materials inside the Al-Aqsa mosque compound and that Friday was a holiday when staff did not work.

Sheikh Omar Kisswani, director of Al-Aqsa Mosque, told reporters that repairs to the entire 144 dunum Haram Al-Sharif/Al-Aqsa mosque compound were the right of the Islamic Waqf and that the Israeli police have no right to interfere in their work.

A spokesman for the Israeli police told Arab News that the “subject isn’t under the responsibility of the Israeli police.”