Israel Strikes New Tone Calling Out Turkey for Support of Terrorism
While Israel avoided criticizing Turkey and hoped to renew rocky ties in the four years since the infamous Gaza flotilla debacle, now Prime Minister Netanyahu’s government is emphasizing Ankara’s ties to terrorist activities in the Middle East – including support for Hamas, Israel’s NRG News reported on Monday.
“Qatar and Turkey support Hamas and are members of the UN. Turkey is also a member of NATO,” Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon said at the 14th International Conference of the Institute for Counter-Terrorism at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya on Monday.
Dispensing with political niceties, Ya’alon demanded the international community draw a unified moral line in the sand against terrorism.
“The foreign terrorist headquarters of Hamas sits in Istanbul. Salah Aruri is the man sitting there. Where is the world? When we talk about the war on terror, it starts with whether we’re choosing to ignore this kind of phenomenon, countries which sponsor terrorism and terrorist activity without hiding it,” Ya’alon charged.
Ya’alon also slammed the UN’s appointment of a commission meant to probe the Israeli army’s recently concluded Gaza operation to fight both terrorist rockets from above and attack tunnels from below into Israeli territory.
“In the wake of Operation Protective Edge they set up commissions of inquiry against us?” Ya’alon angrily questioned.
“They are going to check our moral standards, when we are dealing with an enemy that uses its citizens as human shields, while we are acting in accordance with the principles of international law,” he said.
In a related story, on Tuesday, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said his country would not advance potential deals exploiting Israel’s new massive offshore natural gas fields, until a peace deal with Gaza’s Hamas leadership is reached.
“For energy projects to proceed, the human tragedy in Gaza will have to be stopped and Israel will have to instate a permanent peace there with all elements,” Yildiz said in Ankara, according to Voice of America.
“It is out of question to proceed on any energy project unless a permanent peace is established, with contribution from all sides and with necessary conditions. A human tragedy unfolded [in Gaza], it is all too easily forgotten.”