Turkish court on Tuesday issued life sentences to five individuals involved in the assassination of the Russian Ambassador to Ankara Andrey Karlov on Dec. 19, 2016.
Karlov was killed by an off-duty police officer in 2016, at a time of restoration in Turkish-Russian relations. The Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) was accused of ordering the murder carried out by Mevlüt Mert Altıntaş, who was killed in a shootout with police after the assassination at an art gallery in the Turkish capital.
The assassination came at a time when Turkish and Russian relations seemed to be thawing. Since the murder, Ankara and Moscow have gradually made progress in rebuilding their ties which were disrupted by the 2015 downing of a Russian fighter jet over the Syrian border by the Turkish military.