NEW DELHI: Following Turkey shooting down a Russian military jet in the last week of November, Russian officials have resurrected accusations by rivals of Turkey’s most powerful leaders that Ankara has covertly fueled the rise of Islamic State.

Most recently, Russia’s top generals accused Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his family of involvement in a multi-million dollar oil smuggling operation that is funding the Islamic State (also known as ISIS, ISIL or Daesh).

"Turkey is the main consumer of the oil stolen from its rightful owners, Syria and Iraq. According to information we've received, the senior political leadership of the country - President Erdogan and his family - are involved in this criminal business,” Anatoly Antonov, a deputy defence minister, told reporters and several dozen foreign military attaches summoned at short notice to the army’s high-tech national defence command centre in Moscow.

"In the West, no one has asked questions about the fact that the Turkish president's son heads one of the biggest energy companies, or that his son has been appointed energy minister. What a marvellous family business!” he added.

The Ministry of Defence officials went on to show images as proof of the link.

After loading up with oil, a truck convoy in east Syria heads toward Turkey in direction Al-Qamishl:

October 18: in the Drer-ez-zor region a satellite imagte reveals 1772 oil trucks:

November 14: in the Tavan and Zaho regions, in the zone where coalition forces are active, one can see a gathering of oil trucks:

November 28: in the region Kara-Choh on the territory of an oil refinery one can see 50 oil trucks:

The routes of alleged oil smuggling from Syria and Iraq to Turkey:

A substantial part from east Syria enter a refinery in Batman, Turkey (100km from the Syria border):

Erdogan last week denied that Turkey procures oil from anything other than legitimate sources.

The United States said it rejected the premise that the Turkish government was in league with the militants to smuggle oil. "We frankly see no evidence, none, to support such an accusation," State Department spokesperson Mark Toner said.