Israel recalls diplomats after Turkey's Erdogan decries 'war crimes' in Gaza

By Chicago 5 Min Read

Israel-Gaza War News: Amid the ongoing war between Israel and Gaza, Tel Aviv on Saturday said that it was recalling its diplomatic staff from Turkey. The move comes after Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated his remarks that Israel is an “occupier”, and Hamas was “not a terrorist orgamisation”.

“Given the grave statements coming from Turkey, I have ordered the return of diplomatic representatives there in order to conduct a reevaluation of the relations between Israel and Turkey,” Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

What did Erdogan say?

Turkey President while addressing a pro-Palestine rally in Istanbul, on Saturday, said “I reiterate that Hamas is not a terrorist organisation. Israel was very offended by this. (…) Israel is an occupier, Erdogan speaks clearly because Turkey does not owe you anything.”

According to Reuters report Türkiye President Erdogan had said, “Israel has been openly committing war crimes for 22 days, but the Western leaders cannot even call on Israel for a ceasefire, let alone react to it”.

“We will tell the whole world that Israel is a war criminal. We are making preparations for this. We will declare Israel a war criminal,” he said.

In reiteration of his remarks, Erdogan called Western powers “the main culprit” behind the Israeli army’s “massacre” of Palestinians in Gaza. The Turkish leader has been a leading international supporter of Palestinian rights during his two-decade rule.

Erdogan accused Western powers of “shedding tears” over the death of civilians in Ukraine and turning a blind eye on the death of Palestinian civilians in Gaza.

“We are against all these double standards and all these hypocrisies,” he said.

And he accused Israel’s allies of creating a “crusade war atmosphere” pitting Christians against Muslims.

“Listen to our call for dialogue,” Erdogan said. “No one loses from a just peace.”

Israel-Gaza war: Latest update

Israel launched an expanded ground operation on Saturday after knocking out communications and creating a near-blackout of information in the Gaza Strip with increased bombardment and artillery fire overnight.

Israel’s defense minister said that “the ground shook in Gaza” and that the war against the Palestinian territory’s Hamas rulers had entered a new stage. Gaza residents described the massive overnight bombardment from the sea and the air as the most intense of the 3-week-old Israel-Hamas war.

(With inputs from agencies)


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Updated: 28 Oct 2023, 10:32 PM IST

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