Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova’s reply to a media question about the latest Turkish criticism of Russia’s policy in Syria
Question: Following the deaths of 36 Syrian refuges off the coast of Turkey, Prime Minister of Turkey Ahmet Davutoglu has placed the blame for these deaths and those of many other Syrians on Russia and its policy of supporting Bashar al-Assad. Will you comment on these statements?
Maria Zakharova: Speaking in Ankara on January 6 of this year, Mr Davutoglu again accused Russia of colluding with the Syrian government and also cynically attempted to place the blame for the death of Syrian migrants off the coast of Turkey on Russia and the UN Security Council.
This is an example of distorted logic that confuses cause and effect. These absurd accusations are evidence of Turkey’s intention to avoid direct responsibility for the deaths of these and many other Syrians.
I’d like to remind you that it is the Turkish government’s policy of aiding and abetting various radical and terrorist groups in Syria that has largely promoted and continues to promote the swell of violence and extremism that border on caveman barbarity. One result of this is the increase in the number of refugees, many of whom are looking for a better life in Europe with covert encouragement from the Turkish government. In fact, this has been openly recognised by the European countries that have to deal with the massive inflow of migrants from the Middle East and primarily Syria.
Therefore, we’d like to recommend members of the Turkish authorities to prepare their statements more responsibly and not to look for the notorious “long arm of Moscow” in everything that happens around the world.
January 8, 2016