World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday reiterated his country's conditions to mend ties with Israel.
"The answer we have given to those who called us to talk about the Israeli issue has been the same: Firstly, we demand an official apology. Secondly, redress for the relatives of the victims. And thirdly, we demand an end to the blockade on Gaza. Without compliance to any of these three conditions normalization [of relations] is not possible," Erdogan told reporters in a joint press meeting with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovyc in Kiev, Ukraine.
Erdogan's remarks came as response to a question over reported mediation efforts to set relations right between Turkey and Israel which came to a historic low after a deadly Israeli attack on Gaza-bound aid flotilla in May 2010 in international waters that killed nine Turkish nationals and wounded many others.
"If there is anyone who would guarantee that all of our conditions will be attained, then they are welcomed to mediate. Otherwise, no need to bother," Erdogan said.
Following a report of an international panel investigating the raid on Mavi Marmara, the lead Turkish vessel of the Gaza flotilla, Turkey reduced its diplomatic relations with Israel to second secretary level, expelling all other Israeli diplomats in Turkey.
The Turkish government also cancelled military agreements and planned military exercises.