Turkey confirmed that it shot down a Russian warplane Tuesday, claiming it had violated Turkish airspace and ignored warnings. Russia confirms that the plane crashed but insists that it was only flying over Syria.
Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a "stab in the back" committed by "accomplices of terrorists".
"This goes beyond the normal struggle against terrorism. This was a stab in the back by the accomplices of terrorists.
"Our pilots and our plane did not in any way threaten Turkey. It is quite clear.
"They were carrying out an operation against [Islamic State militants] in the mountains of northern Latakia, where militants who originate from Russian territory are concentrated. So they were carrying the key task of preventative attacks against those who could return to Russia at any time," Putin said.
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