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Russians Not Ready to Forgive Turkey for Downed Plane – Poll

A policeman walks past the Turkish Embassy in Moscow.

The majority of Russians are not ready to restore relations with Turkey after it downed a Russian warplane in November 2015, a survey by the state-run VTsIOM pollster published Monday revealed.

Some 63 percent of respondents think the Kremlin should not lift the anti-Turkish sanctions that were imposed by Moscow following the downing of a Russian fighter-bomber by Turkey near the Syrian border, the result of the poll showed.

Another 78 percent of Russians spoke out against any kind of compromise with Ankara unless the Turkish authorities officially apologize for the incident.

Only 11 percent of respondents told VTsIOM that Russia should restore ties with Turkey even if Ankara does not apologize for shooting down the plane.

The poll also found out that the majority of respondents — 54 percent — believe that Turkey has been hit harder than Russia by the worsening of relations between the two countries.

Thirty-five percent of respondents said both sides have been suffering due to the conflict and only 3 percent of poll participants think Russia has been hurt harder than Turkey.

Turkish fighter jets shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter-bomber near the Turkish-Syrian border on Nov. 24, 2015. The incident caused outrage among Russian politicians and was followed by a package of economic sanctions against the country. The measures include the suspension of charter flights to Turkey, a ban on a wide range of Turkish food imports and restrictions on work visas for Turkish nationals.

The poll was conducted Feb. 6-7, with 1,600 residents from 46 Russian regions and republics. The margin of error does not exceed 3.5 percent.

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