Ankara, September 29: Turkey has categorically refuted the allegation of shooting down an Armenian warplane. The charge was levelled against the Tayyip Erdogan-led regime by Yerevan earlier today. The Turkish forces were accused by the Armenian Defence Ministry of using the F-16 fighter jet to bring down their warplane flying over Nagorno-Karabakh region.
The SU-25 warplane, that was deployed over the Artsakh territory in response to a "military aggression" by Azerbaijan, was downed by the Turkish fighter jet, claimed Armenian government spokesperson Shushan Stepanyan. The pilot of the warplane was killed, he added. Why Azerbaijan, Armenia Are On Edge of Full-Blown War: Nagorno-Karabakh Dispute Explained.
Fahrettin Altun, the press advisor of Erdogan, addressed the media to publicly dismiss the allegations levelled by Armenia. The "lies" were part of the propaganda arm of Yerevan to tarnish the image of Turkey and Azerbaijan, he said.
Rather than resorting to "cheap propaganda tricks", Altun added, the Armenian government should focus on establishing long-time peace by vacating the "occupied Azeri lands".
While Altun denied Turkey's military intervention so far in the fatal clashes underway in Nagorno-Karabakh region, he told reporters that Ankara is "deeply committed" to provide all possible aid to Azerbaijan in its quest to reclaim the territories illegally occupied by Armenia.
At least 55 military personnel and civilians, including both Azeris and Armenians, have been reported dead in the clashes that flared up since Sunday. The number of casualties in a face-off is highest since 1992, when the two Caucasian neighbours were locked in a full-scale war.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Sep 29, 2020 10:12 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).