Russian ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov
© Russian Embassy in Turkey
Russian ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov
The Russian ambassador to Turkey has died after being shot by a gunman in Ankara, where he was attending a photo exhibition, the Russian Foreign Ministry has confirmed.

"This is a tragic day in the history of Russian diplomacy. Today, Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrey Karlov died after being shot at during a public event in Ankara," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said on Monday evening.

The assault on the Russian ambassador is an "act of terrorism," she added.
gunman ankara
"We are in touch with Turkish officials, who assured us that there will be a thorough and comprehensive investigation [into the case]," Zakharova said.

The ambassador, Andrey Karlov, was shot as he was delivering a speech on the opening of the exhibition "Russia in the eyes of Turks."

Photos purportedly showing the perpetrator bearing a firearm are now increasingly circulating on social media. Users are also posting pictures which they say show the Russian ambassador lying on the ground after having been shot.



The perpetrator, who was wearing a suit and a tie, shouted 'Allahu Akbar' ('God is great' in Arabic) during the attack.

Following the shooting of Karlov, the assailant shouted: "Don't forget Aleppo! Don't forget Syria! Only death can take me away from here. Whoever has a role in this cruelty, they will pay for it one by one. They will," the man went on to say.


Comment: Bizarre that he self-identifies as a jihadist given that - as a clean-shaven, urban policeman - he led the life of an infidel.

Presumably, these comments from the assailant mean that he was upset with Russia co-liberating Aleppo.


Since last year, Russia has been providing Syrian government forces with air support in their fight against terror groups and rebels.

Turkish NTV broadcaster says that three other people were also injured in the attack on the ambassador.

The attacker has been killed by Turkish Special Forces, Turkish Anadolu news agency reported.

The gunman was a police officer, Ankara's mayor confirmed.

Previously Interfax, citing a source in the Turkish military, reported that the perpetrator had presented a police ID as he entered the exhibition.

Meanwhile, a picture allegedly showing the perpetrator's personal file, apparently proving he was indeed a police officer, was posted on social media.

Reacting to the assault on the Russian ambassador, the US State Department expressed its condemnation.

"We condemn this act of violence, whatever its source. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families," State Department spokesperson John Kirby, wrote on his official Twitter account.

The attack on the ambassador might be an attempt to jeopardize relations between Moscow and Ankara, Russian MP and member of the International Relations Committee, Elena Panina said.

"I believe that this is a provocation to disrupt improved dialogue between Russia and Turkey. Moreover, we know that [Turkish President] Erdogan is due to visit the Russian Federation. Therefore, it is a pure provocation," Panina told RIA Novosti news agency.