Air cargo was legal, says Russia
A SYRIAN plane forced to land in Turkey was legally carrying radar parts for Syria, Russia’s foreign minister said last night.
Sergey Lavrov said the cargo of “electric equipment for radars” was a legitimate shipment that complied with international law, though he said it was of “dual purpose”, meaning it could have civilian and military applications.
“It’s not forbidden by any international conventions,” he said, adding that the Russian company that sent it to Syria will demand that Turkey return the cargo. He did not name the cargo’s intended recipient in Syria. Turkey’s prime minister has said it was destined for the Syrian defence ministry.
The Syrian Airbus A320 was intercepted by Turkish fighter jets on its way from Moscow to Damascus on Wednesday and forced to land in Ankara.
Tensions between Turkey and Syria are running high, fuelled by recent cross-border shelling from Syria that killed five Turkish civilians.
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