Russia lifts ban on chartered flights to Turkey

Relations between Turkey and Russia continue to reach new heights as the banning of all flights to Turkey have been officially lifted by Russia.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Association of Russian Tour Operators says 15 Russian companies are preparing to charter flights to Turkey from September 2, 2016.

Russia on Sunday lifted its ban on chartered flights to Turkey, according to a report published on the Russia Today (RT) website on Sunday.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed the decree changing laws surrounding chartered air transportation between Russia and Turkey.

Russia had banned chartered flights to Turkey, which was a popular holiday destination for Russians, after the shooting down of a Russian air force jet by Turkey's military last November.

“Airline carriers have started submitting requests to Rosaviatsiya (the Russian Federal Air Transport Agency) for carrying out on-demand operations to the Turkish Republic," Russia's Transport Minister Maksim Sokolov was quoted by the Russian Transport Ministry website. 

"Thus, Russian air authorities are ready to provide necessary conditions for charter flights to Turkey, including issuing all relevant permissions."

Anadolu Agency reported that the Association of Russian Tour Operators had said in a statement that 15 Russian companies are preparing to start the charter flights to Turkey from September 2.

The shooting down of the Russian jet led to a freeze in relations, including economic sanctions and a bar on Russian tourism to Turkey that only thawed in June when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan wrote to his counterpart and the two later spoke by telephone.

Putin gave his support to Turkey over the July 15 coup attempt and said he stood by the elected government, offering his condolences to the victims of what Erdogan called the “most heinous” armed coup attempt in modern Turkish history.

On June 30, Russia lifted a ban on tourist flights and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu met Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the Russian city of Sochi on July 1.

Later on July 22, Russia also lifted restrictions on flights to Turkey, which had been implemented temporarily following the coup attempt, after Turkish officials assured their Russian counterparts that additional security measures were being taken.

Erdogan on August 9 met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Prior to the meeting, Erdogan had described his visit to Russia as a “rebirth” and a "new beginning of relations between the two countries and an opening of a new page.”


TRTWorld and agencies