Turkish President Erdogan Resumes Incitement Against Israel Over Temple Mount Crisis
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stoked the flames of Palestinian violence on Sunday morning, as he warned that Israel could not “expect the Islamic world to remain unresponsive after the humiliation Muslims suffered with the restrictions at the Noble Sanctuary” – a reference to the new security measures instituted by the Israelis at Jerusalem’s Temple Mount that have been presented across the Muslim World as further evidence of a “Zionist” plot to take full control of the ancient holy site.
Erdogan made the comments as he departed for an official visit to the Arab Gulf states, where he is attempting to mediate the festering political crisis that has pitted a Saudi-led coalition against the pro-Iranian emirate of Qatar. The Turkish leader also accused Israel of violating “fundamental human values,” the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet reported.
Erdogan – who assumed near-dictatorial powers following an April referendum in Turkey – has jailed more than 50,000 people without charge in the wake of last year’s failed coup against his continued rule. A consistently bellicose supporter of the Palestinians, Erdogan has frequently made antisemitic remarks, along with veiled threats to the Turkish Jewish community.
As The Algemeiner reported on Friday, a fascist party aligned with Erdogan’s own AKP Party instigated a violent protest outside Istanbul’s Neve Shalom synagogue, forcing its unprecedented closure for shabbat services this week.
Turkey is increasingly regarded by supporters of the Palestinians as their most important source of solidarity at state-level. At a protest outside the Israeli embassy in London on Saturday, during which Muslim activists burned and stomped upon Israeli flags, Turkish flags were as much in evidence as Palestinian ones.
Israel’s control of security at the entrances to the Temple Mount site has been a constant theme of Erdogan’s incitement against the Jewish state. In May, he declared that Turkey had a“ historical responsibility” towards Jerusalem, given the Ottoman Empire’s control of the city for 4 centuries. The Muslim world had to embark on “unifying efforts to protect Jerusalem against attempts of ‘Judaization’,” Erdogan asserted.
“Each day that Jerusalem is under occupation is an insult to us,” Erdogan told a conference of Islamist clerics, going on to slam Israel as “racist and discriminatory.”