Veteran Russian Diplomat and the official Russian ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov, 62, was murdered by an off duty Turkish cop in the Turkish capital of Ankara. The killer, Mevlut Aydintas is a young 22 year old riot police officer who was off duty at the time of the incident. Ambassador Karlov, who has been in Turkey since 2013, was addressing an art event of eminent photographers at Cagdas Sanat Merkezi modern arts center, which is very close to the Turkish parliament.
The killer’s actions were captured by a photographer of the Associated Press. He fired shots at the Ambassador and circled his corpse when he fell to the ground. He was visibly upset as he smashed some paintings and shouted “AllahuAkbar” and “don’t forget Aleppo, don’t forget Syria” in Arabic. Turkish police officials finally managed to kill the young man, but three other men also suffered injuries during the assault.
Turkish and Russian leaders believe that the young officer was under the influence of Islamic terrorists and have called this an act of terror to derail talks between Turkey and Russia. Ambassador Karlov has had a distinguished career as a diplomat. He had served as the Soviet Union’s diplomat to North Korea during the decade of 1980s, and as an Ambassador in South Korea during the 1990s.
He is said to be responsible for the thaw in the relationship between Russia and Turkey after Turkey downed a Russian fighter jet in November 2015. He was also instrumental in getting Turkey and Russia agree on a host of regional security and economic matters, especially Europe and the war in Syria. Russia was the first country to back the beleaguered Turkish President Tayyip Reccep Erdogan when he faced a military coup and hence an attack on the Russian ambassador at a time when the relations of the two countries were improving is said to be highly disturbing.