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Turkey strongly condemns Israel over baseless claims

13 January 2010 [09:54] - TODAY.AZ
Turkey strongly condemned on Tuesday Israeli Foreign Ministry's statements.
Turkey strongly condemned on Tuesday Israeli Foreign Ministry's statements.

Turkish Foreign Ministry released a statement in which it defined Israeli Foreign Ministry's statements as remarks that were made for domestic political concerns and that went far beyond the limits.

In its statement, the Turkish ministry regretted the statements of the Israeli ministry made in response to Ankara's criticisms and warnings regarding the Israeli attitude towards Palestine.

"Turkey's regional policy aims to ensure peace, security and stability of all countries and people, and to give priority to dialogue, engagement and peaceful means instead of disproportional use of force and isolation," the statement said.

The statement said Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's peaceful initiatives had been appreciated in and beyond the region, and they were particularly and only against Israeli practices in Gaza that were unacceptable.

Deeply-rooted relations between the Turks and Jews that were established long before the foundation of the Israeli state, and the general dimension of Turkish-Israeli relations urged Turkey to make those warnings and criticisms, the statement said.

"Turks have extended a helping hand to the Jews whenever they faced trouble throughout the history, and the long history of co-existence of Turks and Jews is a history of mutual respect and tolerance," the statement said.

The statement also said, "therefore, we reject an allegation (Turkey is the last country that will give an ethical lesson to Israel) that cannot be associated with particularly the memories of the Jewish people."

In its statement, the Turkish ministry defined the allegation as an injustice.

The statement said allegations that anti-Semitism in Turkey were provoked were baseless.

"Our historical file and the remarks of our Prime Minister that anti-Semitism is a crime of humanity are the most clear evidence that these allegations are baseless," the statement also said.

On Monday, Israeli Foreign Ministry expressed uneasiness over a popular Turkish TV series, "Kurtlar Vadisi" (The Valley of The Wolves), through diplomatic channels. Turkish Ambassador in Tel Aviv Oguz Celikkol was summoned to Israeli Foreign Ministry. Israeli diplomats said the TV drama had contained anti-Israel messages.

At a meeting with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri the same day in Ankara, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan criticized Israel for its offensive against Gaza and for violating UN resolutions.

He said Israel never denied that it possessed nuclear weapons, calling on the five permanent members of the UN security Council to be fair, and follow up on nuclear weapons of Israel, just like they did with Iran.

In response to Erdogan's remarks, Israeli Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Israel respected Turkey and was interested in continued normal relations between the two states, but expected the Turkish side to reciprocate with a similar approach towards Israel.

Earlier on Tuesday, Israeli Ambassador to Turkey Gabby Levy was summoned to the Turkish Foreign Ministry for an explanation over Israel's recent statements criticizing Turkey.

At a meeting with Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu, Israeli envoy Gabby Levy was asked about recent statement issued by Israeli Foreign Ministry that strongly criticized Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan after his remarks over Israeli offensive against Gaza.

Turkish diplomats also expressed uneasiness over media reports after Turkish Ambassador in Tel Aviv Oguz Celikkol's meeting with Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon and also the statement made by Israeli Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Yossi Levy.

/World Bulletin/

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