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tv   News  Al Jazeera  November 24, 2015 10:00am-11:01am EST

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thanks for watching. >> announcer: this is al jazeera. ♪ welcome to the news hour live from doha, i'm adrian finighan, our top story this hour. turkey shoots down a russian military jet. it says the aircraft had violated its air space. both pilots ejected from the aircraft, they are reported to have been killed. >> translator: this is a stab in the back, the pilot did not threaten anyone. >> reporter: russia's president
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warns of serious consequences for its relationship with turkey. and france's president arrives in washington for talks on syria with barack obama. ♪ we begin with continuing coverage of the shooting down of a russian military jet by turkish forces. turkey says the plane violated its air spaces. it happened here latakia province just over the border in syria. russia's president has called the incident a stab in the back. he denies the jet violated turkish air space smc smchl -- syrian rebels say they have recovered the bodies of both pilots.
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rob matherson has the latest. >> reporter: a russian jet fighter plunges to the ground. turkey's government says turkish aircraft shot it down. >> translator: this is a is to be in the back. the pilot did not threaten anyone. and the plane was shot down in syrian air space. this tragic event will serious consequences for russia and turkey's relations. >> reporter: both pilots ejected and parachuted to the ground. russian military helicopters are reported to be searching for them near the border. the syrian opposition says it has the body of one of the pilots and a second one that is dead. turkey says the pilots were warned several times before the aircraft was shot down. >> until recently turkey had been careful not to antagonize russia, because it knows this kind of incident can happen.
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and turkey has in fact warned russia on a number of occasions that russian jets were entering turkish air space. so the fact that turkey is feeling now bold enough to take this action, i think speaks volumes about turkey's new political confidence. >> reporter: the russian built all weather attack aircraft has flown in almost all conflict since it was first introduced in 1967. a fleet of around 12 are reported to be flying from latakia, which is russia's air base in syria. the russian government denies the jet entered turkish air space. turkey said russian military aircraft have crossed the border without authorization several times. last month a russian plane flew into turkish air space and the prime described the incident as
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a mistake. he warned then that turkish armed forces had clear instructions to intercept even a flying bird. russian jets are reported to be carrying out around a hundred fights every day. the crash is expected to further strain relations between russia and nato members, unless a diplomatic solution is found fast. al jazeera's correspondents around the world are covering this story. let's first talk to hashem ahelbarra who is monitoring developments from a turkish city near the syrian border. we'll talk about the turkish reaction to what -- to what has happened in just a moment, hashem, but first i want to get the latest on a development. it's claimed by tur -- turkman
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forces in syria that they shot dead the two pilots. it appears the pilots may have survived, and were killed as they were parachuting to the ground. what more do we know? >> adrian, turkman fighters operator in latakia, they the moment the two pilots ejected themselves from the aircraft, they started opening fire, and by the time they landed on the ground they were dead. we have seen a video that has been circulated by one of the turkmen military factions showing armed men surrounding the body that they claim was one of the russian pilots. adrian, the border area that border area, we have many turkman villages and turkman armed groups. these are syrians of turkish
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origin. and they have been acted by this civil war in syria, and most of those turkman joined the free syrian army. they have their own brigade operating, very active. some of these permanent brigades are the [ inaudible ] brigade which took over an isil village about two days ago in aleppo. you have the [ inaudible ] brigade, and 13th brigade, very well trained factions operating there. the turkish government has expressed concerns about the latest escalation of violence in those turkman villages to the point that it has summoned the russian ambassador four days ago, asking the russians to immediately stop shelling turkman villages, they are civilians and turkey has an
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historic right to defend those people. and these villages are right on the border with turkey. so this is definitely an escalation, and we're expecting to see more escalation in the near future. >> all right. let's hear for a moment the deputy commander of a turkman brigade who says that his forces were the ones who shot the two pilots of that russian jet. >> translator: after the russian plane dropped its bomb it turned around from the turkish side and it was hit by turkish forces. the pilots were dead when we took them. our comrades shot at them in the air, they were dead when they hit the ground. they all died in the air. >> hashem you talked about turkey expressing concern about russia's military action in these turkman areas. could it be that this shooting down of the russian aircraft was
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really about protecting turkman areas and turkman people? or is that a step too far at this stage? >> well, adrian, the official line so far from the turkish government that they had to acted because the russian aircraft violated the turkish air space. they had ten warnings, and they ignored those ten warnings, so they had no other choice but to take action. we have talked about fighter jets flying straight into turkish territory. to the point in one of the incidents turkish fighter jets were launched to intercept the fighting jet. but this is clearly a serious development that highlights the strained relations between the two countries. you have two aspects to the story here, adrian.
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one of them, the turks have been concerned about the russian military intervention in syria, saying the russians are using this intervention not necessarily to defeat isil, but to em-bolden bashar al-assad and to pave the way for assad to regain the area it lost over the four years. the turks are staunchly anti- a anti-assad. the second part of the story is the escalation along the border with syria, the russians have stepped up their offensive against isil in areas -- in latakia, and aleppo, and the turks are concerns for different reasons. they say we are willing to join, and we are effectively joining an international coalition against isil, but we don't want to see isil driven away and syrian fighters taking over
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these areas. the turks accuse some of those syrian kurdish militias operating in kobani, of having ties with pkk which turkey considers a terrorist organization. so you have different strategic issues at stake here, and unless the international commute tee gets together it compromised these two key players in the syrian crisis, and escalation will continue in the coming days. >> hashem ahelbarra thank you. al jazeera has a correspondent in latakia over the border in syria. his name is adam, and he has spoken with an opposition fighter who was in the area where those pilots parachuted down. >> translator: until now we don't know the fate of the second pilot. he may have been killed.
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for more we'll talk to [ inaudible ]. >> translator: the russian aircraft violated the air space and it was brought down in an area. the pilot was shot by the opposition fighters. he was shot while he was trying to land and he was killed. >> translator: did you reach the spot where the aircraft was brought down? >> translator: it was on the right of the area, near an area called the northern big river. >> translator: where did it happen exactly? >> translator: it was on the right of the area, near an area called the northern big river. >> translator: what about the second pilot? >> translator: the second pilot dropped in the kurd mountain area. i have heard through my contacts that he may have been killed, but we don't know for sure about the second pilot.
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his fate is unknown. let's bring in aurora -- rory challands live in moscow. what will people make of what we have been hearing that it seems the two russian pilots were murdered by turkman forces as they were parachuting to safety. >> it is being talked about on russian tv and in various russian media spheres, essentially tantamount to an act of war. and if you listen to what putin was saying, he was using the language of someone who has been betrayed by a person he previously thought was a good friend. he was saying this has been a stab in the back for russia. that russia had always treateded turkey in a friendly way. and it's almost like he can't conceive of why this has happened. so he's now trying to find a way
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to respond. and we're starting to see the first inklings of this, the first moves from russia to push back against turkey. this didn't come from vladimir putin himself although his views were made clear, but the actual policy now seems to be coming from the russian foreign minister. first of all the russian foreign minister is canceling a trip, which was planned for tomorrow to turkey to go and talk about gas and talk about -- talk about syria too. that is no longer happening. another thing the russian foreign ministry has said is that russians should not travel anymore to turkey, because the terrorist threat in turkey is now no less than it is in egypt. now this is going to be a reasonably big deal, because there are by some estimates at the moment 10,000 russians in turkey. in it's not the high season, so that's a low number by -- by -- by the levels of -- of russian tourism over a
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year. russia and russia's tourism to turkey is huge. i think it's the biggest population of -- of tourists in turkey are russians. though russia and -- its relationship with turkey and egypt now severely hamper two of its favorite tourist designations. >> it's not as if relations between russia and turkey had been completely rosy of late is it? >> no, there has been souring, but vladimir putin and president erdogan are two leaders that have a fairly good rapport with each other. this started to go wrong pretty much as soon as russia started bombing syria. and that's because some of the targets that russia was going after were groups supported by anchorer, namely turkman groups
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in the north of syria. things then got worse just over a month ago in the beginning of october when russian planes started to go into turkish air space. the turks said we do not like this. the russians said we're sorry it was a mistake. it only happened once. it only happened for a few seconds and it won't happen again. but turkey pushed the matter to nato, and nato backed turkey up. essentially drawing a line, a line it seems now has been crossed with fairly tragic consequences. >> rory challands thank you. let's take you to brussels. neave barker is at the nato headquarters there. there will be an emergency meeting later today, neave.
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>> reporter: yes, that's right. we're about an hour away from the start of that extraordinary north atlantic council meeting. only a handful have been called in the alliance's 66-year history, but it is a key chance for all 28-member states to consider the evidence that is being presented by turkey, by either their military attache or turkey's permanent ambassador to nato. from what we gather the meeting itself will be chaired by nato secretary general, it could last anywhere between an hour to three hours in length. at the end of that, there will be a joint statement. we have been told that the rhetoric of that is likely to focus on unity in this difficult time. unity between all 28 nato alliance members. the last time an extraordinary meeting of this kind was called, was also at the behest of turkey
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in july. back then, turkey asked nato to consider the implications of the threat posed by isil. now, though, a slightly different sen sar you, we're looking at a situation that nato had been very, very keen to avoid ever since russia began targeting strategic areas within syria. viewed as strategic by the russians, but of course, huge concern amongst the u.s.-coalition, some of those targets were in fact anti-assad groups, supported and backed by the united states. so there has always been a sense of concern that this could indeed escalate into greater tensions, but of course the biggest concern was that in a theater of war with so many players, that the likelihood of an international incident like this would happen is a real blow to attempts to bring russia and the nato alliance closer together.
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>> you talked about the -- the mood there, being one of -- of possibly concentrating on -- on deescalation. i mean what is the talk about what turkey has done? are people agsa or are nato members generally supportive of turkey's actions? >> well, we are yet to see whether or not essentially what the response will be from the nato alliance to the evidence presented to them by turkey, but of course a key member of the nato alliance, as a grounding principle, i suppose of what nato really stands for. and an assault against one, an incursion against one member will be a knock-on effect of all the member states. but of course with differences
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of opinion from both russia and turkey as to where exactly the jet was, these are things that nato will definitely need to carefully consider before issuing that final statement in a few hour's time. >> neave many thanks. let's go a view now from a research fellow, joining us live from rome. john what do you make of this incident? >> well, this incident, actually we were expecting this incident, giving the russian operations. since the outset of the air campaign we have three types of harassments and violations of turkish air space. the first time was open violation by identified russian aircraft. the second one was unidentified nationality violations by mig
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29s, and at the same time we had radar [ inaudible ] by syrian air defenses. as the situation escalated to the systematic bombardment of turkmans by the russian air force. turkey just [ inaudible ] its reaction and criticism about the russian operations, but it was also given the geographical proximity to the turkish border, and lack of coordination between the russian air operations and turkish air patrols, it was inevitable. and further turkey downed a russian drone about one month ago. and it was a firm warning from turkey to the russians about the robust and firm stance of turkey with regard to its rules of
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engagement. >> you said this incident was more or less inevitable. this russian aircraft posed no threat to -- to turkish sovereignty. was it a justified response to shoot it out of the sky? >> that's a very good question. why we are talking right now with you, why i'm on this interview, i can assure you that many greek aircraft as -- are violating turkish air space as well. but we don't hear any greek aircraft being shot down by turkish air defenses. we should remember why turkey has these kind of rules of engagement vis-a-vis the syrian air space, because these strict rules of engagement are coming from the 2012 incident when a
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turkish jet was shot down [ inaudible ] rich shan [ inaudible ] syrian air defense. and then turkey just shifted its rules of engagement and just warned syrian authorities about that. and the syrian authorities apparently didn't get the message so it ended up with several shot down. the second answer to your question is to understand the nature and procedures of turkey's rules of engagement, because turkey, according to its rules of engagement, turkey doesn't shoot down any aircraft out of blue we have a warning system. the first warning comes at the 12 miles to the turkish air space -- >> john -- >> yes? >> violating the air space of any country surely has to be seen as a threat, doesn't it? >> like the thing is from turkish perspective.
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the russian aircraft itself may or may not be trapped due to its combat patrol, or combat payload, but the threat is violation of turkish air space and especially rules of engage , because these rules of engagement are the most critical part of turkey's defense policy, with syria. >> okay. john good to talk to you. let's listen again to the first reaction from president vladimir putin on the downing of that jet. he was speaking from sochi a short time ago. >> translator: this is a stab in the back. the pilot did not threaten anyone. either way, our pilots and our plane were not posing a threat to turkey. this tragic event will have serious consequences for russian turkish relations. we have always regarded turkey not only as a close neighborhood, but also a
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friendly state. instead of contacting us immediately, turkey addressed their nato partners as if it was us who downed their plane, not vice versa. our jet fell 6 kilometers away from the border, within syrian air space. france's president is in washington, d.c. for talks with president barack obama. let's go live now to the white house. patty culhane is there. patty what will the two be talking about, given this incident, which has the potential, i supposed to overshadow their talks. >> reporter: it definitely will. because president hollande is going to be in moscow on thursday. it probably moved up on the agenda quite a bit after recent developments. president hollande is going to meet with the president for
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about an hour, and then meet with the press and take questions. a lot of the people i have talked to say this is more symbolic than actual concrete things that are going to come out of it. after the paris attacks president obama said he would intensify the strategy but not change the strategy. he is sticking to the plan, which is fewer than 50 forces operating in syria, and about 3,000 american soldiers training iraqi soldiers in iraq. and he is going to intensify the air strikes from the coalition above the skies, but as for changing it in anyway, president hollande is coming here to try to get that move. he says it is a strategy that will work over the long term. >> diplomatically this shooting down of the russian jet by turkey, could -- the timing couldn't be any pourer, could it? >> reporter: really couldn't.
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we're going to be watching for how forcefully he comes out in defense of turkey. if he comes to their defense forcibly, that shows he is committed to the nato alliance, if he backtracks and says let's see what happens, then that is a sign to turkey that the president is not pleased with the actions. there are a lot of different countries flying a lot of different planes over a fairly small air space. obviously this is one that they were not able to prevent, but the department of defense quickly came out and said the u.s. was not involved. >> you talk about the u.s.'s concern, it could be argued that this incident has only happened because of the u.s.'s historic reluctance to get involved in
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syria's conflict. >> reporter: the americans overwhelmingly -- the majority say he does haven't plan to defeat the islamic state of iraq and the levant. the president, though, has shown no inclination that he has any possibility that he is going to change his strategy. he does not want to see large ground force in syria to try to defeat isil. i have spoken to military experts who have trying to get a sense of what the president wants to accomplish. and they tell me the kurd strategy is really designed to contain isil into a geographical position, and he has to wait for the local forces to become better fighters so they can fight them on the ground. even when he decided to send in special forces, the white house insisted they would be nowhere
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near the battle. he is definitely taking a cautious approach. >> patty thanks. you are with al jazeera, and our continuing coverage of the downing of a russian war plane over the turkey, syria border. and it's ramifications. the developments, the implications following that incident. we'll take a short break and be back with more news in just a couple of minutes. ♪
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positive. >> a lot of these small businesses are recycling for economic reasons. >> techknow's team of experts show you how the miracles of science... >> this is what innovation looks like. >> can affect and surprise us. >> i feel like we're making an impact. >> let's do it. >> techknow - where technology meets humanity. ♪ >> hello again this is al jazeera. our top story this hour, turkey has summoned russia's ambassador after the turkish military shot down a russian fighter jet near its border with syria. turkey says the jet violated its air space and that it warned the plane ten times before taking action. both pilots ejected from the aircraft, but died, they are reported to have been shot by turkman fighters. moscow says it can prove that
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the aircraft doesn't in turkish air space. vladimir putin said the downing of the jet was a stab in the back. he denied that the plane had crossed into turkish air space. turkey is expected to brief its nato allies in brussels later on tuesday. it's the first time that a nato remember has shot down a russian aircraft since 1950. let's take you live to the united nations headquarters in new york. gabriel elizondo is there. gabe what has been the reaction to this incident there? >> reporter: well, we have just heard from the u.k. ambassador to the united nations whose on the security council and actually the president of the security council this month. he was on his way into a regular security council meeting on south sudan. however, as he was going into meeting, he stopped and talked to us briefly.
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he says the u.k. depends turkey's right to defend its own air space. he went on to say he is extremely concerned about events, he did confirm two important things. he confirmed in the last hour or so, the security council has received a letter from turkey that in his words sets out the facts of the situation. of course that's a letter from turkey, the facts as turkey sees them. but he did confirm that the security council did receive this letter. he also said importantly that so far the security council is not planning any meetings specifically on the downing of the russian aircraft. he said no member state so far, so far at least, has requested such a meeting. as far as ban ki-moon is concerned, we have yet to hear from him so far today. also russia's ambassador to the u.n. did go into this meeting, but he did not stop to talk to
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journalists he just went right past us, would not take any questions. going back to the u.k. ambassador to the u.n., he also mentioned in the last few minutes or so, he said we need to learn our lessons of de-confliction. he urged everyone to de-escalate and take a measured response. late september, early october that was the key message coming out of the united nations during the u.n. general assembly meeting. but let's listen a little bit more to what he had to say. >> the united kingdom depends turkey's right to protect its own air space and if we have a discussion, i'm sure we won't be alone in that. it doesn't call for a meeting on any particular action.
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i think these events demonstrate the importance of de-confliction. stepping back from the detail for a moment, we have a shared interest with all of the countries in the region. they are all trying -- we are all trying in our different ways to defeat isil. >> not sir -- surprisingly gabe given that they are diplomat, but the emphasis on de-escalating this incident. >> that's right. when the u.n. general assembly meeting was happening here in new york, that is also about the time frame that russia began their air campaign in syria. at that time, it was russia and the united states in this very building were talking a lot about de-confliction. and this is the idea that -- avoiding any sort of aircrafts of shooting each other
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down over the skies of syria, that is what everyone here is talking about, that's what diplomats here were talking about. they were trying to avoid exactly -- almost exactly what we now see happened today or at least in the last 24 hours or so over syria with this incident. and so that is probably what we are going to be hearing a lot more about from the u.n., when the security council meets, if they should meet about this. but clearly that is a key, key issue that the u.n. and diplomats here are going to be focusing on, but clearly so far, at least from the talk ts late september, early october. this is what they were trying to avoid. >> gabe many thanks. gabriel elizondo at the u.n. the reuters news agency says the downing of the russian plane shows the turkish government supports terrorism. that's another view, the syrian view of the downing of that
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plane. and also the russian news agency has confirmed that turkey warned the pilots -- repeatedly. and the pilots did not respondent. our correspondent is in latakia, and has spoken to an opposition fighter who was in the area where the pilots parachuted down. >> translator: until now we don't know the fate of the second pilot. he may have been killed. for more, we'll talk to [ inaudible ]. >> translator: the russian aircraft violated the air space, and it was brought down in an area. the pilot was shot by the opposition fighters, and he was killed. >> translator: did you reach the spot where the aircraft was brought down?
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>> translator: it was on the right of the area, near an area called the northern big river. >> translator: where did it happen exactly? >> translator: it was on the right of the area, near an area called the northern big river. >> translator: what about the second pilot? >> translator: the second pilot dropped in the kurd mountain area. i have heard through my contacts that he may have been killed, but we don't know for sure about the second pilot. his fate is unknown. >> so there are claims that these turkman fighters shot dead the two russian pilots as they were parachuting towards the ground. so who are these turkman? they are ethnic turks who have lived in that region, spanning turkey, syria, iraq, and iran for hundreds of years. dating back to the 11th century.
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there are around 1.5 to 3.5 million. they were among the first to take up arms against syrian government forces. they look to turkey for support and protection. let's bring in al jazeera's political analyst who has been with us for the last few hours. i want to talk to you about who these turkmen are, and the region as a whole, that border region between syria and turkey, and the various political factions that are there. but first let's just step back and get your take on this incident as a whole. the -- the political fallout from it, the diplomatic ramifications. >> well, certainly it's another factor that adds to the complexity of the situation over syria. some of it is mind goggling and con fies -- confusing for a lot
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of us. the fact that for months on now they have been bombing isil by some of the most sophisticated air forces in the world. the russians adds to the americans. and now the french got in. and the british are getting their parliament to approve their bombing. and why is isil not going away? it begs the question that now we're having tensions among, presumably allies, in the fight against isil when isil is flourishing and attacking everywhere from paris to [ inaudible ] and so on and so forth. now we're seeing tensions and friction among those allies in the war against isil. so certainly on the turkish russian front we are probably going to see escalation and tension. certainly the other nato members will step in and try to bridge
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the differences, but the syrians are continuing to suffer from war, we're seeing isil continue to rise and -- with more members and more attacks, and we're also seeing specially after this sort of a thing, far more expenditures being thrown at the military industrial complex, whether it's russia, the u.k., united states, or france. >> yeah, let's talk about that border area, then. isil on the rise there. but it's not the only group, armed group on the ground in that border region near to the turkish border. and then further over in iraq. there are many, many groups. the peshmerga fighters there, the syrian opposition fighters, you now have the turkman, it's a very confusing picture, isn't it? >> it reflects the mosaic of the middle east. look at lebanon, you know.
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tens if not tuns of different ethnic, political, idealogical and various islamist groups. same thing with syria. a variety of ethmoiditis, and now we have various degrees of islamist extremism within. at the end of the day this is a richness as well as a challenge of the middle east. the fact that it is rich with diversity is a source of good, if you will for the culture there, but it also can become a source of friction. so between the kurds and the turkmen and the various opposition groups now resistant groups and the various isil, al-qaeda and others, it is a very complicated situation. now, of course, russia has been blamed for at least in the beginning of avoiding bombing isil in favor of bombing the more main stream groups that
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were opposed to bashar al-assad. why? because at the end of the day, putin stepped in into syria to support the assad regime against its adversaries, some of them who from the beginning wanted a more peaceful democratic syria. but putin is stepping in to strengthen the assad regime, in the process a lot of those smaller groups are getting lost in -- in the war. >> so what was turkey's motivation here? what was turkey trying to do when -- it knew full well what it was doing when it shot a russian war plane out of the sky. it didn't have to do that. the situation could have been de-escalated, couldn't it? >> i'm going to assume after weeks and weeks of the kind of warnings we have heard from the turks against the russians, perhaps this time around it's not just the command making the decision on its own, and even if
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it is, it is because the establishment in turkey is treating russia not exactly as an ally and friend, but actually as a hostile force that is basically violating its air space. so whether it did or did not step into the turkish air space, the turks could say we are within the legal framework, but the russians are saying first of all we did not step in this, second of all this is not legitimate because we were not attacking you. >> but this is not about shooting down a plane that was violating air space, turkey was making a bigger point here. >> exactly. this is a symptom of a larger and deeper problem. and that of course there is a russian side to it and a turkish side to it. on the turk side the turks they think have been taken for granted. turkey has taken the burden of most of the syrian refugees. most of the syrian opposition
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figures are hosted in istanbul and other places. the turkish economy has taken a hit, the turkish security has taken a hit, and yet turkey has provided its air bases for america to use against the bombing of isil. it's basically saying or claiming that it has done all it can in order to provide the kind of help, in order for a war on isil to take place, and yet it's basic demands such as for a safe zone in northern syria for nato to intervene and support turkey more forcefully in syria, all of those things are not happening. turkey is also saying that bashar al-assad is a main driver, the engine behind the instability and extremism in this syria. that point has been ignored more and more over the last few days and weeks especially after the paris attacks. turkey is now saying to everyone, to moscow as well as
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to london, paris, and washington, look, you can't ignore us anymore. we have a vision about this issue. we have red lines on this question. you need to take us into consideration. >> it was a huge gamble then on turkey's part. what do you make of the international response, particularly america's first response, which was to say, it wasn't us. we weren't involved at all. i mean this is a symptom, as you say of perhaps the world in action, isn't it? that if america had been involved more forcefully in syria, and had a plan for syria, none of this wouldn't have happened. russia wouldn't be there, turkey wouldn't have needed to react in the way it has. >> from washington, of course the perspective is, look when we act in iraq we are dammed, when we don't act in syria, we are damned. we can't win either way with you in the middle east.
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when in fact their intervention in iraq was really a very bad idea. and no intervention in syria in some form or another was perhaps also a bad idea. why? in the middle east until the russians stepped in, everyone understood that the sixth fleet in the mediterranean and the american's fifth fleet in the persian gulf, and the american presence in the overall middle east, means america is the regional cop, everyone turns to america when something happens or doesn't happen. in this case the obama administration has step back. either it lead from behind or didn't lead at all, or underestimated the isil danger. some people say calculated, some say not calculated. either way the void as you were saying, left by the united states in the sense of not taking the lead as it did before as people expected it to
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do before, is allowing the likes of second-tier powers like turkey, russia, iran, and others to step in and fill the void. in that is creating major tension over syria. what will the administration do now? it doesn't seem like they will take the lead? like in israel, they are supporting the israeli operation, but saying we're going to bridge the differences at least. they will probably try to step in as the mediator between russia and turkey, step in as the mediator, not the leader, and we're going to see more and more crisis management, and the underlining here is crisis. >> always great to talk to you. let's go live now to washington al jazeera's rosiland jordan state department correspondent is there. france's president has arrived at the white house for talks on
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syria with barack obama. before we get to that, what is the official line on this incident from the state department? >> reporter: well the a state department is saying that it has seen these reports. it hasn't been able to independently confirm those reports, but the pentagon is saying that not only do they know this incident happened, they say they were notified by turkish officials about the shoot-down of the russian fighter jet. now the u.s. is also stressing that american personnel were not involved in this incident. they are stressing this is a situation that needs to be resolveder by the turks and the russians themselves. they are not weighing in on whether or not there should be any sort of larger action from nato, of which turkey is a member. it is important to note that the u.s. is trying to figure out just for its own purposes,
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really where exactly did this incident between the turkish f-16s and the su-24 take place. was it in syrian air space or turkish air space? the incident has raised real concern here in washington because of the ongoing complexity of two countries leading air strikes inside syria and over that civil war that is taking place between the government of bashar al-assad against those opposed to his rule. >> and what ros is the latest line from the white house where barack obama is meeting with france's president hollande largely a symbolic visit, but important nonetheless. >> reporter: well, some are expecting it is going to be more than symbolic, because of the fact that in light of the november 13th attacks in paris that francois hollande is trying
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to get more robust military action against isil from itself allies. the u.s. has stressed since it started its own air strikes a month ago, that the military component is only one part of the way to defeat isil. so there -- we can expect a very robust discussion about the way forward. we can expect a similar discussion about how much more of a military engagement the u.s. should be involved in, when [ inaudible ] goes to the pentagon in a couple of hour's time to meet with defense secretary ash carter even though the u.s. has stepped up its intelligence sharing with france, the real question is, is that going to be enough? france is arguing that much more needs to be done in terms of military resources. but let's be honest, the u.s. has the vast majority of the resources compared to france. and certainly there is real
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reluctance as we heard from patty culhane earlier this hour, by the administration to step up the military engagement, because what happens next? and that is a question that has not been satisfactorily resolved within the obama administration. >> and speaking of the military engagement what is the view from washington from the nato perspective, of course, turkey being a nato member and an ally of the u.s. >> reporter: so far there hasn't been any endorsement or criticism of the idea that nato needs to act robustly; that it needs to invoke article 5 of the charter to help protect turkey, because there is some apparent skepticism although it hasn't been spelled out as such that this was an incident that would merit the need for the entire alliance to real late. the only time that article 5 was
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actually invoked was 14 years ago after the september 11th attacks. that's a very, very different situation from what apparently had happened along the turkish syrian border earlier on tuesday. so there will be these discussions as we have heard from neave barker who is in brussels, but it's also a question of what is the proportionate response, what is the appropriate response. certainly that is going to be discussed here in washington as we start this full day of government officials taking questions from reporters about what did happen between turkey and russia. >> rosiland jordan reporting live from washington, d.c. many thanks indeed. the conflict at the edges of turkish air space began almost as soon as russia started its air strikes on syria in and it will september. russia gave little warning of its campaign to the u.s.-lead
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coalition, attacking isil in syria and iraq. frantic diplomatic efforts were made to establish safe flying areas. turkey scrambled to intercept a russian plane which crossed into its air space. it also said they its jets had been harassed by a russian plane on the syrian border. this is the first time a nato member country has shoot down a resh shan jet since the 1960s. let's take you to moscow. rory challands is there for us. president putin expressing his anger over this incident, rory. rory? i don't know whether you can hear me. >> yes, i missed your question. >> i was saying how president putin earlier had expressed his
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anger over this incident. >> reporter: yes, he has. and he used very, very powerful language. language picked up by the russian media. now they are leading their bulletins with the phrase stabbed in the back. it's the language that putin was using was the language of someone who feels deeply betrayed by a person or a friend. and is struggling to work out what happened. so vladimir putin is now saying that this -- this attack, really, on -- on -- on a russian military asset, a plane, was done by turkey. turkey is now being called an accomplice of terrorism. it is saying turkey's first response was to run to nato, rather than talking to russia. run to nato, as if it wanted to get nato as well to start supporting isil. because from the russian
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perspective, it has been taking on isil for months now. and any act that is aggressive act against russia, must be supporting isil. this is the kind of narrative that moscow is creating now and is playing out on russian tv. >> rory challands live from moscow. turkey has summoned russia's ambassador after turkish military planes shot down a russian fighter jet near turkey's boarer with syria. turkey says the jet violated its air space, and that it warned the plane ten times before it took action. both pilots ejected from the plane, but died, reports are that they were shot by turkman forces before they reached the ground. further coverage of this developing story just ahead here
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turkey shoots down a russian fighter jet on the border with syria, saying the plane violated its air space. i'm barbara sarah, you are watching al jazeera live from london. vladimir putin says it is a stab in the back from what he calls terrorist accomplices. the pilots are thought to be dead, and the helicopter searching for them has been destroyed on the ground. all of this as the french president arrives in washington,
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