Comments on Turkish-Israeli relations

Spokespeople for the U.S., British and French foreign ministries commented on Turkey's latest decision to take a series of measures in its relations with Israel.

Comments on Turkish-Israeli relations

Foreign ministries of the United States, Britain and France have called on Turkey and Israel to display efforts to solve their problems.

Spokespeople for the U.S., British and French foreign ministries commented on Turkey's latest decision to take a series of measures in its relations with Israel.

Speaking to AA on Friday, spokesperson Noel Clay for the U.S. State Department said the United States felt sorry that Turkey and Israel could not agree on steps to help them resolve their problems before the UN inquiry panel released its report on last year's deadly Israeli raid on Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara aid ship.

Pointing to the U.S. side's friendly relations with Turkey and Israel for long years, Clay said the U.S. hoped both countries would continue to seek opportunities to improve their relations.

Commenting on the same issue, an official from the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office said the British ministry currently looked at the details of the report and hoped that it contributed to achieving full accountability.

"The UK supported the UN Secretary-General's establishment of a panel of inquiry and was clear from the outset that the panel has an important role to play in investigating and resolving the dispute over the Gaza flotilla incident and preventing future recurrence," the official told AA.

"We urge both sides to renew their efforts to find a package to allow reconciliation," the official added.

Moreover, spokesperson Bernard Valero of the French foreign ministry told reporters on Friday that France hoped bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel would calm down as soon as possible.

Valero also called on the two countries to display efforts for dialogue.

On May 31, 2010, Israeli commandos raided a humanitarian aid flotilla heading for Gaza, killing nine Turkish nationals one of whom was a U.S. citizen.

Turkey said after the attack that it expected Israel to make a formal apology, pay a certain compensation to the families of the victims and to end its blockade over Gaza.

The United Nations established an inquiry panel to examine the incident. The UN panel's long-awaited "Palmer Report" was handed over to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on September 2.

The report said Israel's interception of the vessels was "excessive and unreasonable," while the flotilla acted "recklessly" in attempting to breach the naval blockade. It also said the Israeli naval blockade on Gaza was imposed as a "legitimate security measure" to prevent weapons from entering Gaza by sea and its implementation complied with the requirements of international law.

Prior to the presentation of the report, details have been leaked to the press as U.S. daily New York Times obtained a copy of it.

Following the leaking of the report, Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoglu held a press conference on Friday and unveiled a series of decisions concerning Turkish-Israeli relations including downgrading diplomatic relations to the level of a second-secretary, suspension of military agreements, measures pertaining to freedom of navigation in the Eastern Mediterranean and demanding a review of the Israeli blockade over Gaza by the International Court of Justice.

AA

Last Mod: 03 Eylül 2011, 15:59
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