Erdogan: We didn't know warplane was Russian
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says his country's air force did not know that the plane they shot down on Tuesday was Russian when, according to RT.Source: B92, Tanjug
In addition, Erdogan said that Turkey "does not want escalation with Russia because of the downed plane."
"We have no intention to provoke an escalation of tensions over this incident. We only defend our security and the rights of our brothers," Erdogan said in Istanbul, according to AFP.
He, however, added that "no one can expect Turkey to remain silent when it comes to violations of its borders."
"Yesterday morning our airspace was violated by an aircraft of unknown origin. Two aircraft were warned not to cross the border ten times in two minutes. One of our aircraft was warning them to go back to Syria, and they continued to violate the airspace," said Erdogan, quoted by the Turkish paper Hurriyet.
Erdogan also asserted that the Turkish planes fired on the Russian plane while it was in Turkish airspace - but that it fell in Syria, with "some parts falling in Turkey and injuring two Turkish nationals."
Russia, however, maintains that the plane was attacked while in Syrian airspace. The Russian Ministry of Defense also published footage that allegedly proves the Russian military aircraft never violated Turkey's airspace.
It has been reported on Wednesday that one of the pilots who ejected from the Russian bomber was rescued, while the other was murdered, and that Russia was beefing up its air defenses in Syria.