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Relations Between Turkey And Israel Hit Rock Bottom

July 5, 2010

It is easy to understand why the relations between Turkey and Israel are strained to the degree they are, given what has happened over the past weeks.  The question remains as to how sour things will get, and who will step into the breach to repair the damages.  Clearly, Israel needs to extend the first hand and deliver an apology.  Barring that first step it seems this international falling out will continue for some time.

Turkey has for the first time threatened to break diplomatic ties with Israel over its raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in May.

Turkey’s foreign minister said a break could only be averted if Israel either apologised or accepted the outcome of an international inquiry into the raid.

The Israeli government said it had nothing to apologise for.

Ankara curtailed diplomatic relations with Israel after the naval raid, in which nine Turks were killed.

Turkey – which until recently was Israel’s most important Muslim ally – withdrew its ambassador and demanded that the Israelis issue an apology, agree to a United Nations inquiry and compensate the victims’ families.

 Turkish foreign ministry official told the BBC relations with Israel had hit rock bottom, but Ankara would not rush into cutting ties.

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Turkey would be satisfied with the ongoing Israeli inquiry if that found Israel to be at fault.

Mr Davutoglu told Hurriyet newspaper: “[The Israelis] will either apologise or acknowledge an international, impartial inquiry and its conclusion. Otherwise, our diplomatic ties will be cut off.”

He also said there was now a blanket ban in place on all Israeli military aircraft using Turkish airspace, not just on a case-by-case basis.

It comes just five days after a surprise meeting between Mr Davutoglu and Israeli Trade Minister Benjamin Ben Eliezer in Switzerland.

Reacting to the Turkish stance, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said: “We don’t have any intention to apologise.”

Foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP news agency: “When you want want an apology, you don’t use threats or ultimatums.”

One might also add that when a nation such as Israel wants to live in the international community of nations they can not act in the fashion they so often do.

  1. ReasonableCitizen permalink
    July 5, 2010 12:02 PM

    If both sides wait for the other side to apologize for wrong doings then no progress will be made. So be it.

    There is no reason for the US to seek peace between Israel and its neighbors.
    If Israel does not seek it, so be it. If Hamas does not seek it, so be it.

    Let them both seek peace or war as they choose. Our presence or our absence will determine who wins. So be it.

    The US seeks friends and partners in the Mideast. If neither one or only one of them seeks friendship with the US, so be it.

  2. gb hero permalink
    July 5, 2010 10:18 AM

    Turkey must apologize first to israel for supporting the terrorist group hamas until that happens the world must not back turkey as it steps a little closer to radical Islam and becomes a new threat to the civilized western world.

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