Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has said he wants to work with Russia to “calm tensions”. It’s not quite an apology, but it is a sign that Ankara is not interested in escalating the situation further.

Likewise, despite angry soundbites coming from the Kremlin in response to the downing of a Russian Su-24 bomber by a Turkish F-16 on 24 November, Russian diplomats are working behind the scenes with their Turkish counterparts to cool things down.

The prominent Kremlinologist Mark Galleotti has written that he doesn’t expect any further overt provocation between the two sides. However, he is concerned that the incident might intensify the proxy war in Syria, as both Turkey and Russia start providing greater material and financial support to groups working against the interests of the other.

Turkey’s intervention has come at a sensitive time. Following the Paris terror attacks, both Russia and the West had sensed an opening that could potentially lead to greater cooperation over Syria. However, there is now a question mark over what happens next, with much depending on how Russia reacts.

So, how should Russia react? Can all sides de-escalate the situation and cooperate to resolve the Syrian conflict? Will increasing Russia-Turkey tensions work in the favour of the so-called “Islamic State” militant terror group? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: Creative Commons – Kremlin.ru

35 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. avatar
    DL Bearden

    I think Turkey attacks on Kurds is more complicating. Turkey called out the Russians for lies that they’re fighting Daesh. They are fighting anti Assad rebels.

  2. avatar
    Dino Boy Mican

    Turkey did what America wouldn’t dare! When Russia sent planes down there, some expressed worries about such an incident. But thanks to Bataclan, Russia was close to becoming a key valuable ally in the antiterrorist war. The US hated the idea, so they put Turkey up to it to stop this approach.

  3. avatar
    Kianglek Tan

    Tension between the two would definitely stall progress in the fight agsisnt Daesh.

    It would provide Daesh with the necessary moments to reorganize and test on political baiting of supposed allies into becoming enemies.

  4. avatar
    Sarah EsEs

    Any country who supports isis is terrorist country. And i say no to terrorisme

  5. avatar
    Katrin Mpakirtzi

    Isis is Turkey hafifat.They want to be West country with beheads crucified and sell…women??? and make all of us islamists??

  6. avatar
    Nando Aidos

    The question should be – what can be done to ease the tension between the two countries? Will it work in favor or against ISIS? Who cares?

  7. avatar

    The question should be:
    – what can be done to ease the tension between the two countries?

    Will it work in favor or against ISIS? Who cares?

  8. avatar
    Leonor Tulekian

    Russia may have it’s own agenda but don’t think Turkey is innocent. Turkey has been oppressing and killing Kurds and Yazidis in the region since they’ve been a state

  9. avatar
    Enric Mestres Girbal

    Unless the “powers” get toghether and plan a proper war against Daesh, terrorism will advance. Who is who over Syria?…Russia pro Al Assad and against ALL terrorists…France against Al Assad and ISIS…USA against Al Assad and ISIS, but pro sirian terrorists…Turkey depend where the wind blows from…EU as coward as ever…probably a new summit would be necessary.

  10. avatar
    Adnan Soysal

    turkey will continue to shoot russian planes if they repeat the mistake again.
    turkey will stand yup again russian terror in syria slaughtering everyone against monster assad

  11. avatar

    What’s Russia’s business there anyway. What are they protecting ?

  12. avatar

    Who would have thought on 9.11.2001 that the USA would be part of a plan of Regime change where Jihadists woud be the poxy warriors that they are supporting, organizing, training, arming, funding, giving politicall and military support to, just mind blowing.

  13. avatar
    catherine benning

    Increasing Russia – Turkey tension will work in favour of cutting off the access to funds being received by ISIS. And more than that, get to the bottom of who is funding, training and giving them US weapons to aim at the Syrians. Now what an eye opener that would be and aren’t those responsible for this backing pissing themselves with fear at being caught at it.

  14. avatar
    EU reform- proactive

    Paris was (hopefully) a serious wake up call- building a French- Russian détente.

    More important is that a Turkish EU membership- supported by Germany- must NEVER happen! The trio- Merkel, Juncker & Schulz- have become a European liability:

    A glory, power hungry, dictatorial and 99% Muslim Erdogan state has too many historical black holes & will drag the whole of Europe into an endless (religious) inspired conflict.

    Which reasonable democratic country on earth can justify such mad extravaganza?

    A comparative modest secular “Russian democracy” should be preferable to a fake “Sultanate Muslim democracy”! Both may be flawed but so is the present “destructive capitalistic EU democracy”. Obviously, Turkish economic growth & their ~80 mio citizens are favorably eyed by EU bean counters & the US. Their exposure however as a loose NATO canon, dangerous double talk & underhand dealings- is a too great risk to get married to! Rather deal with a known European bear than with Allah Akbar howling “grey wolves”!

    • avatar
      catherine benning

      EU reform- proactive

      You, again, are so right.

  15. avatar

    No but it will work for eu forced integration. By using strategic depopulation you can waterdown sovereign states thus creating an atmosphere of disarray . You then use this to forcefully build your empire. Turkey is on the side of the americans, whom have control over just about every eu leader. The americans need an integrated eu, they need a market or thell go bankrupt which in my opinion they already are.
    Ergodan got caught with his finger in the pie, or truckloads of stolen oil. The russians were stopping his cash flow and the result was one downed plane as a warning. The cats out of the bag, ergodan is a crook . Photos ,satelite photos, journalist , people on the ground , the kurds, theve all seen his dirty work.. Time to fess up ergodan time to come clean…!
    Nato is in the employ of the elite or 1%, and does thier bidding. They are in fact a runnaway train, dont get in the way..
    Im afraid that the direction in which we are being forced isnt going to bode well for europeans or others around the globe. We all have a stake in the future, we need to turn the tide or face a slow demise at the hands of these elite 1%.
    Merkel is an idiot and more than willing to dance to the whims of the few, what a moron. Hey lets pay turkey and give everyone free access to europe. Last week customs found 800 weapons destined for germany , holland and france, and guess where they came from , yup turkey. Again ergodan knew nothing, strange.
    The game is called, empire building 101 .
    Junker and Timmermans know very well whats being played and what the next move is. Its an europhile dream come true..

  16. avatar

    No it will not. Turkey is doomed if it goes head to head with Russia. Both a financial or a military war would leave Turkey wrecked. Erdogan is way in over his head. Oh by the way, I said that it will not benefit ISIS because Turkey is one of the countries who fund them and support them.

  17. avatar
    catherine benning

    @ Taker

    And who is behind Turkey in this endeavour? Any ideas? I bet the money men have a great deal to do with it. You know those banks that are robbing us blind. Big money has to be moved via banks and it’s easliy recordable.

  18. avatar
    Elias Raptis

    Even though I have been in Istanbul, loved the city and its people, I do have some disagreement about its partnership in the EU. Turkey, specially the last years, lacks a lot on respecting its citizens rights and equality. We all have seen the Turkish bans on Youtube and Twitter whenever a scandal occured for the Turkish leadership. Furthermore, the Turkish authorities have attacked and threatened of jail the press in cases of criticism to the government and the President himself.

    I truly believe that diversity is vital for the EU. Therefore, I would support the participation of a mostly islamic country if it also respects the diversity in the Union it wants to join. A characteristical example of that is Albania, that is consisted by a majority of Muslims, Christian Orthodox, Christian Roman Catholics and atheists who all live in peace and have made huge reforms in protecting all social groups rights. So, as for Turkey, I am not pretty sure if Turkey, not its people, but its conservative government are associated to that path. For instance, what would Turkey do for LGBTQI rights or bringing peace with its Kurdish big minority?

    We also have to consider that if Turkey joins the EU, the MEPs who will represent Turkey to the European Parliament will become the biggest national group in the Parliament. So the question is “do we want Turkey to get such a big impact role at once, do we want Erdogan’s conservative party, that will mostly represent Turkey, have that big influence in the EU?

    Let us not also forget Turkey’s relations to other neigboring European and non countries. Violating thousands of times (2241 times in 2014) Greece’s airspace, still holding illegaly the Northern part of Cyprus, new problems with Russia, problems with Israel, problems with Armenia. Plus, there is more and more evidence that Turkey supports and funds the ISIS.

    To sum up, I think that there must be done a big work in many sectures so that Turkey will be joining the European Union. I support the request, but the request is not mature enough to get positively accepted.

    • avatar
      Elias Raptis

      Oops that goes in another debate! Sorry guys!

  19. avatar
    Elias Raptis

    The previous comment goes to the EU-Turkey relations. If it is possible to move it there during the moderation it would be great, because I cannot delete or copy it there. Thank you!

  20. avatar
    Digital Packet

    Here we have an issue between two modern style of dictatorships

  21. avatar
    Philip Morgan


    Q: “Will Russia-Turkey tensions benefit the so-called “Islamic State”?'”

    A: I wonder what this question would read like flipped around the other way?


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