Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that wrong coordinates of Turkish army’s locations provided to Russia resulted in a deadly Russian airstrike on Turkish army’s positions in al-Bab.
Turkish military should not have been in the location where Russian jets had conducted their anti-terrorist operation, Peskov said.
“As for the reasons [for the incident], they are clear. The situation is evident: unfortunately our [Russian] military relied on coordinates provided by their Turkish partners when conducting airstrikes. Turkish servicemen should not have been in the location, coordinates of which had been provided.”
“That is why these unintentional strikes [killing Turkish soldiers] took place,” Peskov added.
When answering a question whether or not a mistake by Turkish intelligence caused the error, Peskov said that “it is the lack of coordination concerning sharing coordinates.”
On Thursday, the Kremlin spokesman confirmed that Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed condolences to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan over an accidental Russian airstrike that had killed Turkish soldiers in Syria. Peskov said that Russia and Turkey will jointly investigate the deadly incident.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that poor coordination was the reason for an unintentional Russian airstrike killing Turkish soldiers near Syria’s al-Bab, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
The Russian Defense Ministry said that Russian bombers had been on a mission to destroy Daesh terrorists’ positions near al-Bab, where Turkish soldiers had been accidentally bombed.
On Friday, the Kremlin spokesman also shared details of Russian President Vladimir Putin discussion of the incident with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“It was quite a detailed and constructive discussion apart from this incident… They discussed issues related to, inter alia, bilateral relations including in the context of the high-level council to take place in March.”
The incident came amid the Turkish military operation in Syria’s al-Bab which has entered the final stage. Turkey’s units entered central al-Bab, the operation is being conducted in coordination with Russia to prevent clashes with Syrian government forces.
Russian and Turkish military jets have repeatedly jointly bombed Daesh targets near al-Bab in Syria. Al-Bab is one of Daesh’s last remaining strongholds near the Turkish border. Capturing the city is of strategic importance to Turkey in order to prevent the Syrian Kurds taking it and unifying their own territories.