Comment by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on the murder of Russian Ambassador to
Turkey Andrey Karlov in Ankara, Moscow, December 19, 2016
This is a terrible tragedy. We are grateful to the Russians who have brought flowers at this time of night. I have
received many telephone calls and internet messages. Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova has also received
numerous messages of condolence from Russians and requests to convey their sincere condolences to the family on the
heinous murder of Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov. President of Russia Vladimir Putin has just had a
telephone conversation with President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The Turkish leader telephoned to express his
heartfelt condolences on this tragedy. The presidents have agreed to conduct a joint investigation into this barbaric
crime. On December 20, a special investigative group will go to Turkey to join their Turkish colleagues in
investigating this crime. Our main goal is to learn who stands behind this crime. As President Putin said in a
telephone conversation with President Erdogan and in his televised address, we are convinced that the main objective
of those who organised this barbaric crime is to hinder the normalisation of relations between Russia and Turkey in
order to undermine the effective struggle against terrorism in Syria. It is a futile attempt that will not succeed.
On December 20, we will hold a planned meeting between the foreign ministers of Russia, Turkey and Iran. I have just
had a telephone conversation with my Turkish colleague, Mevlut Cavusoglu, who has come to Moscow. I am convinced that
we will approve measures at our meeting to preclude the organisers of this crime from implementing their plans.
I would like to again express my deep gratitude to all Russians and to my colleagues abroad who have conveyed their
condolences on this tragedy, including EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
Federica Mogherini, Foreign Minister of Switzerland Didier Burkhalter, Foreign Minister of Belarus Vladimir Makei and
UN representatives. These names are the first that come to mind, but we have received condolences from many more
people. I again express my deepest gratitude to all Russians. We see and feel your solidarity.