Body of pilot in downed Russian jet returned home

Turkey has recovered the body of a Russian pilot and presented it to diplomats, five days after shooting down his warplane near the border with Syria.

A coffin carrying Oleg Peshkov arrived by ambulance on Sunday on the tarmac of Hatay Airport in southern Turkey near the Syrian border. It was flown to the capital Ankara, where according to Russia’s RIA news agency it was met at an airfield by Moscow’s ambassador and military attache.

The Russian embassy has declined to comment.


Tensions between the two countries remain high, with Moscow claiming the incident was a pre-planned provocation.

President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Saturday imposing punitive economic sanctions against Turkey. Details of Turkish goods that will be banned and other measures under the decree are expected to be announced in coming days.

Turkey says Peshkov’s plane was in its air space and had ignored repeated warnings when it was shot down. Russia says it was flying over Syria and was struck unprovoked.