Assassination boosts Russia’s leverage against Turkey: Analyst

Assassination boosts Russia’s leverage against Turkey: Analyst

Wed Dec 21, 2016 6:53PM

The Kremlin has described the assassination of the Russian ambassador to Ankara as a blow to Turkey’s prestige. On Wednesday, the State Duma voted for a resolution condemning Monday’s assassination of Andrey Karlov in Ankara.

Marcus Papadopoulos, publisher and editor of the Politics First from London, told Press TV’s Top 5 that after the assassination of Ambassador Karlov, Moscow has more leverage to exert pressure on Turkey over Syria and other issues of difference.

“That (the assassination) will give the Russian government even more leverage over the Turkish government and that could be a good thing in the context of Syria,” Papadopoulos said on Wednesday.

Russia has the opportunity “to ensure that all the different terrorist groups in Syria from ISIS (Daesh) to al-Nusra to the so-called Free Syrian Army are defeated,” he noted, adding that it is obvious Turkey is a training camp for extremists, who are wreaking havoc in the Arab country.

According to the analyst, “Russia does have a lot of leverage over Turkey,” and “this year, President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan was groveling for forgiveness from President Putin” over Turkey’s downing of a Russian warplane.

He also said, “That really demonstrates that Russia has the upper hand over Turkey when it comes to Syria,” urging the Russian government to continue to hold its leverage over the Turkish government.

Papadopoulos further expressed hope that “Erdogan will start to reflect seriously on his policy towards Syria and understands that the Syrian government will not be overthrown.”

Pointing to the future relationship between Moscow and Ankara, he stated that the assassination is a “damage to Turkey’s relations with Russia,” because the Turkish authorities are responsible for the safety of diplomats in their country.

Russia and Turkey have been supporting the opposite sides to the conflict in Syria over the past years. However, the two countries have recently stepped up cooperation to resolve the crisis in the Arab country.

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