Turkish claims of airspace violation 'propaganda': Russia

Turkish claims of airspace violation 'propaganda': Russia

Moscow (AFP) - The Russian defence ministry Saturday dismissed as "baseless propaganda" Turkish claims of a new airspace violation by a Russian fighter jet, in the latest spat between the two countries.

"There has not been a single violation of Turkish airspace by Russia air force planes in Syria," ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov told Russian news agencies.

"The Turkish declarations concerning the alleged violation of its airspace by a Russian Su-34 are baseless propaganda," Konashenkov added.

Ties between the two countries have hit rock-bottom since Turkey, a key NATO member, shot down a Russian fighter jet on the Syrian border in November, sparking a war of words with Russia which insisted its plane had not crossed into Turkish airspace.

Ankara alleges that a fresh violation took place on Friday, when it summoned the Russian ambassador to the foreign ministry in protest at the latest alleged airspace violation.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday said Russia would "have to face consequences if it keeps up such violations".

NATO head Jens Stoltenberg called on Russia to "act responsibly and to fully respect NATO airspace".

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