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June 27, 2016 / 21 Sivan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Turkey’

Missing Soldiers’ Parents Demand Return of Bodies Before Turkey Reconciliation

Saturday, June 25th, 2016

As Turkey and Israel work on their reconciliation agreement, Gaza is playing a central role.

The parents of Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin are demanding the Israeli government include the return of their children’s bodies from Hamas as a condition of any agreement signed, according to the YNet report.

The two were killed during Operation Protective Edge in Gaza and Hamas stole their bodies.

The families are planning to set up a protest tent outside the Prime Minister’s residence. The father of Hadar Goldin called the deal with Turkey an award to Hamas.

Other families who lost children in the war have joined the protest.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Israel and Turkey to Meet June 26, ‘Declare a Deal’

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016

Israeli and Turkish delegations are set to meet on Sunday (June 26) to “declare they have reached a deal” to end the six-year-long conflict between the two nations.

The two teams, headed by Turkey’s Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu and Israeli special envoy Joseph Ciechanover, have been carefully negotiating for months.

But after Sunday’s “declaration,” the agreement will allegedly be finalized, according to a report by the Turkish Hurriyet Daily News, and then signed in July by Foreign Ministry undersecretaries of both nations.

Ambassadors will be reappointed in both countries and diplomatic relations will be normalized by the end of July, if all goes well, if the document is signed as expected, if there are no hitches and if everything else goes as planned. According to the report, if that takes place, the final obstacles will also be removed from joint military exercises, joint energy investments and joint defense investments.

If all goes according to plan.

All of Turkey’s demands have been met, in the wake of the 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla incident that so angered Turkey’s then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan that he severed ties with Israel.

Years of talks — and in particular, these past months of negotiations — have led to creative solutions on both sides that allowed for dignity and saving of diplomatic face with Turkey’s demands still able to be met by Israel. It was a delicate task, given Turkey’s insistence on freedom for Gaza, and Israel’s need for security in the face of the Hamas dedication to Israel’s annihilation.

But that does not mean that the current President Erdogan cannot come up with new demands, or reinterpret those that were met — or suddenly reject Israel’s responses.

Should Israel suddenly take action in response to a national security issue that upsets or offends the Turkish president, it is quite possible he may dial back his nation’s agreement to re-establish ties.

Diplomats and officials on both sides are holding their breath.

Hana Levi Julian

Day 2: Turkey’s Police Again Targeted in Car Bombing, This Time Near Syrian Border

Wednesday, June 8th, 2016

For the second time in 24 hours, Turkish police were targeted Wednesday by terrorists in a car bombing, this time at a police station in a town on the Syrian border.

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters that three people were killed in the attack, which took place at around 11 am local time, including a police officer and two civilians and more than 30 were wounded in the town of Midyat, in the southeastern province of Mardin, according to Turkey’s Hurriyet Daily News.

The bomb-laden vehicle arrived at the police headquarters compound from the direction of the southeastern province of Batman carrying 500 kilograms of explosives, authorities said. The driver attempted to enter the headquarters compound but was stopped by police and exploded when police opened fire to block the vehicle, according to the Dogan News Agency.

Surrounding buildings were damaged by the blast and the flames that erupted.

Yildirim bluntly said the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) terrorist group was behind the attack.

“This has not surprized us. Their circle is slowly tightening. The fight against terrorism is tough and requires determination. There are killers in the guise of humans in front of us and behind us,” Yildirim told reporters in Istanbul.

On Tuesday seven police officers and four civilians were killed in Istanbul and 36 others were injured in an attack targeting a police bus heading for duty at Istanbul University.

No group has yet come forward to claim responsibility for that attack, nor for Wednesday’s car bombing in Midyat.

Hana Levi Julian

11 Killed in Car Bombing Attack Near Istanbul University

Tuesday, June 7th, 2016

Seven police officers and four civilians were killed and 36 others were wounded in a massive explosion Tuesday morning at the Vezneciler metro station in the Beyazit district in Istanbul. Three of the injured were in critical condition.

The attack took place on the first day of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, in a nation led by a government that has grown increasingly observant of Islamic cultural mores and restrictions.

Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nachshon, no Israelis were killed or injured in the terror attack, “according to the information we have from our Consulate.”

A car bomb detonated at around 8:35 am as a police bus passed a police station while heading to Istanbul University for regular duty, according to Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin.

Police evacuated the area and exams scheduled for the day at the nearby university were cancelled.

Security was increased in the Vezneciler neighborhood where the attack took place, and bomb disposal teams were sent to the site. Gunshots were heard immediately following the blast, the Anadolu news agency reported.

There has not yet been any claim of responsibility for the attack. However, Turkey has been a prime target for the Kurdish Workers’ Party PKK terror organization, as well as Da’esh (ISIS) in recent months.

Hana Levi Julian

Turkey’s President Erdogan ‘Waiting for Israel’ to Respond on Gaza

Saturday, May 21st, 2016

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he is waiting for Israel to grant permission for Turkey to construct energy and water transfer infrastructure in Gaza, according to a report published Saturday (May 21) in the Hurriyet Daily News, quoting an earlier broadcast.

“I expect that something will happen this month. It’s my wish that we’ll reach a conclusion in a short time,” Erdogan told a news broadcast by A Haber on May 19.

“In regards to [lifting] the embargo, they say, ‘We are open to allowing goods into Gaza through Turkey, but we are not open to those coming from places other than Turkey.’ But the problem is not only this. We have some other demands,” Erdogan said.

The Turkish leader said Ankara has demanded that Israel allow provision of continuous energy to Gaza, “as the enclave has only three to four hours of electricity per day,” Erdogan said.

He added that Turkey’s proposal to provide electricity to Gaza through a naval vessel was rejected by Israel.

“But they proposed something else: We told them that we are ready to construct all the infrastructure [of energy]. They viewed the proposal positively,” Erdogan said.

The second demand, he said, was that Turkey be allowed to provide water to Gaza either by desalinating the sea water or by drilling wells. “There are positive developments with regard to this issue as well,” he said.

Turkey’s third demand from Israel, said Erdogan, was regarding construction projects in Gaza.

“Our third offer is about building schools and hospitals. The construction of a hospital has been completed and necessary equipment is being provided. ‘These must be done,’ we told them. ‘If these would be done, then we’ll immediately appoint ambassadors and improve our relations in the right direction.’”

According to the report, Israeli and Turkish diplomats are expected to meet in the near future to finalize an agreement between the two countries.

But it’s impossible to know what the final outcome will be: Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party is set to meet at a nationwide Congress on May 22 to choose a new prime minister.

Incumbent Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, hand-picked by Erdogan, resigned his position earlier this month.

Hana Levi Julian

Turkey’s PM Ahmet Davutoglu Resigns

Thursday, May 5th, 2016

Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu resigned from his post on Thursday afternoon.

Davutoglu told journalists at a news conference that followed the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party’s central executive committee meeting, “I have worked with my heart and soul. There was no fallout from the AK Party structure during my chairmanship.

Davutoglu explained that his decision to resign was made “out of necessity,” saying, “I think that it is right to step down for the continuity of AK Party’s unity and solidarity,” according to Turkey’s Daily Sabah news site.

Erdogan has long been pressuring the party – and the country – for a Constitutional change that would create a presidential leadership government, one without a prime minister.

“Strong AK Party governments will continue in the next four years. Determined operations against terror groups are successfully continuing,” he said. “No investments were left unfinished and there were no setbacks during my tenure as prime minister,” he added.

Davutoglu said he would not run as a candidate for party leadership in the May 22 party congress. However, he said, “I will not tolerate any speculations about my relationship with President [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan. My loyalty to the president will last to the end.”

It is not yet clear how Davutoglu’s resignation will affect Turkey’s diplomatic talks with Israel.

Hana Levi Julian

Israel to Open Permanent Office at NATO Headquarters in Brussels

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced Israel will accept an invitation from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to open a permanent office at its Brussels headquarters in Belgium.

The invitation allegedly came after Turkey lifted a veto that blocked the upgrade five years ago. If true, it is another move that signals a warming of the ‘big chill’ between Ankara and Jerusalem since 2010.

“This is something we worked on for many years,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting.

“I think this is important to Israel’s standing in the world. The countries of the world want to cooperate with us because of our determined struggle against terrorism, because of our technological knowledge, our intelligence deployment and other reasons.”

Israel is currently a participant in the NATO Mediterranean Dialogue, together with Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Jordan, Mauritania and Morocco.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-to-open-permanent-office-at-nato-headquarters-in-brussels/2016/05/04/

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