Russia Looks to Cut Economic Ties With Turkey

November 26, 2015 Updated: November 27, 2015
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MOSCOW—Russia said Thursday it would be looking to cut economic ties with Turkey and scrap investment projects in a matter of days in the aftermath of the Turkish downing of a Russian warplane.

The televised statement by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev came a day after Russian media reported hundreds of trucks bringing Turkish goods stranded at the border.

Relations between the two countries soured after Turkey on Tuesday shot down a Russian warplane on a bombing mission near the Syria border. One of the pilots was killed, the other was rescued.

Medvedev instructed the government to draft sanctions against Turkey within the next two days in a response to the downing of the Russian Su-24, which he described as an “act of aggression against our country.”

Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for President Vladimir Putin, explained on Thursday that customs officials along the border were scrutinizing Turkish goods due to “various reasons” including a possible terrorist threat.

“This is only natural in the light of Turkey’s unpredictable actions,” Peskov said.

In Georgia, customs officials reported that trucks with Turkish number plates driving via Georgia to Russia cannot get through. A statement issued by the Georgian finance ministry’s excise service said some trucks that can’t get into Russia are driving back to Azerbaijan and Turkey while hundreds are deciding to wait in the neutral zone between Russia and Georgia.

Last year, Russia imposed a ban on food imports from the U.S. and EU nations in retaliation for their sanctions over Russia’s annexation of the Crimean peninsula.