Moscow and Ankara restore relations after the terrorist attack in Istanbul airport
Russia and Turkey have put aside their divisions to pledge to work together to tackle Islamic State (ISIS) jihadis after a deadly suicide terrorist attack struck Istanbul's main airport last night. The two nations have reunited after a monumental fall out over the downing of a Russian jet in Turkish airspace last year but renewed efforts to defeat the terrorist group appear to have united old enemies.Three suspected ISIS bombers opened fire and blew themselves up at the Ataturk airport - Europe's third-busiest - on Tuesday evening, killing 41 people and wounding 239. President Tayyip Erdogan said the attack should serve as a turning point in the global fight against terrorism, which he said had "no regard for faith or values".
Putin and Erdogan expressed a determination to restore relations between Moscow and Ankara and push ahead with a shared fight against terrorism during this morning's telephone conversation, the Turkish president's office said. A statement added it was important for Turkey and Russia to cooperate on political, economic and humanitarian crises in the region. The pair agreed to meet in person after the phone call - clear signs that both leaders hope to put aside their past differences over how to respond to ISIS.
On Monday, Erdogan expressed regret in a letter to Putin over Turkey's downing of the Russian warplane last year, although the Kremlin later sought to dampen Turkey's hopes for a swift restoration of normal relations.
Meanwhile, after the tragedy at the airport Head of the Russian Federation Council's International Affairs Committee, Konstantin Kosachev, suggested the terror attack was aimed at derailing the attempts of Turkey's leadership to repair relations with Russia.