A suspected terrorist struck in Turkey, killing the Russian ambassador at an art exhibition in Ankara on Monday, officials said.
Andrey Karlov, 62, was several minutes into a speech at an embassy-sponsored photo exhibition when a man in a suit shot the diplomat in the back from close range multiple times.
The 22-year-old gunman shouted “Don’t forget Aleppo” as he pulled the trigger. The chilling attack on Monday evening, which was captured on video, appeared to be a backlash against the Russian military involvement in the Syrian civil war.
Footage of the attack showed a man dressed in a suit and tie standing calmly behind the ambassador. He then pulled out a gun, shouted “Allahu Akbar” and fired at least eight shots.
Russian President, Vladimir Putin called the killing a “provocation” aimed at sabotaging a rapprochement between Moscow and Ankara and attempts to resolve the conflict in Syria.
“The crime that was committed is without doubt a provocation aimed at disrupting the normalisation of Russian-Turkish relations and disrupting the peace process in Syria that is being actively advanced by Russia, Turkey and Iran,” the Russian president said in televised comments.
Putin said: “There can be only one answer to this – stepping up the fight against terrorism, and the bandits will feel this.”