Netanyahu & Erdogan trade verbal blows over Gaza

Netanyahu & Erdogan trade verbal blows over Gaza
By Robert Hackwill
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Relations between Israel and Turkey deteriorate further after violence on Gaza border.


A war of words has erupted between the leaders of Israel and Turkey over the violence on the Gaza border. On Saturday Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the deaths of 16 protesters and the over 1700 injured, according to Palestinian medical sources, an "unhuman act".

When this was sharply rebuffed by Israel's prime minister, on Sunday the Turkish president hit back.

"We are dealing with terrorists, but your concern is not the terrorists. Because you are a terrorist state yourself. As a terrorist state what you have done in Gaza is clear, what you have done in Jerusalem is clear," he said to a crowd at a rally.

The outburst was triggered by Netanyahu tweeting this:

"The most ethical army in the world will not be lectured to by those who have been indiscriminately bombing civilain populations for years. I suppose that's how you mark April Fools' Day in Ankara".

Gaza has driven Turkey and Israel apart before and led to a period of severed relations after 2010 and the Gaza flotilla incident. Normalisation of relations began at the end of 2015, but last December Erdogan threatened to cut ties if the US moved its embassy to Jerusalem.

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