President Vladimir Putin said on Monday that the killing of Russia’s ambassador to Turkey was a provocation to try to spoil Russia-Turkey ties and derail Moscow’s attempts to find, with Iran and Turkey, a solution for the Syria crisis.
In televised comments, Putin, speaking at a special meeting in the Kremlin, ordered security at Russian embassies around the world to be stepped up and said he wanted to know who had “directed” the gunman’s hand.
For his part, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said he had agreed in a telephone call with Putin that their cooperation and solidarity in fighting terrorism should be even stronger after the killing of Andrei Karlov.
Erdogan too called the killing a clear provocation aimed at damaging relations between Turkey and Russia at a time of normalisation.
Turkey’s foreign minister said common sense was prevailing in both Russia and Turkey, and the two countries would work together to investigate.
Mevlut Cavusgolu was speaking in Moscow, where he was due to meet his Russian and Iranian counterparts to discuss the situation in Syria.
In comments carried live on Turkish television, he praised the Russian ambassador as a “great man” and a “great diplomat”.