Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim addresses the media in Ankara, Turkey, June 27, 2016. REUTERS/Umit Bektas(reuters_tickers)
ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey will not pay compensation to Russia over the downing of a fighter jet last year and has only expressed regret over the incident, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said on Tuesday, after President Tayyip Erdogan wrote to his Russian counterpart.
The Kremlin said on Monday that Erdogan had apologised to Russian leader Vladimir Putin in a letter. Erdogan's spokesman confirmed the letter to Putin but did not refer explicitly to an apology, saying the Turkish president had expressed regret and asked the family of the pilot to "excuse us."
Yildirim also told reporters in parliament that legal proceedings were underway against an individual allegedly responsible for the killing of the Russian pilot.
(Reporting by Gulsen Solaker; Writing by Daren Butler; Editing by Nick Tattersall)