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January 17, 2017 / 19 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Turkey’

Turkey Warns Citizens Against Travel to United States Due to Violent Protests

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

Turkey has warned its citizens against traveling to the United States in an advisory on the website of its Foreign Ministry posted Saturday.

The warning comes in the wake of the coast-to-coast protests by supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton that have taken place in some two dozen major American cities following Tuesday’s election of Donald J. Trump as the next president of the United States.

The ministry said in its warning, “It has been understood from protesters’ social media accounts that the protests will continue for a while.”

The ministry also advised Turkish citizens to be “calm” about possible “xenophobia and racist abuse” and to “contact local security forces in the event of such incidents.”

Turkish media has been closely watching events in the United States.

“In Indianapolis, some protesters began chanting threats including “Kill the Police,” and officers moved in to arrest seven demonstrators. Police briefly fired pepper balls into the crowd during the confrontation,” reported the Hurriyet Daily News.

“Protesters rallied at New York’s Union Square before taking their cause up Fifth Avenue toward Trump Tower, where they were held back by police barricades. The Republican president-elect was holed up inside his tower apartment, working with aides on the transition to the White House.

“Among those railing against him was filmmaker Michael Moore, who tweeted a demand that Trump ‘step aside.'”

The new president-elect was reported to be “making some headway in forming a new administration.”

Hana Levi Julian

Turkey Bracing for Acid Rain after ISIS Blows Up Mosul Sulfur Factory [video]

Monday, October 31st, 2016

Turkey is on high alert for a huge acid rain cloud coming its way following a fire that erupted at a sulfur plant south of Mosul, the Daily Mail reported Sunday night. ISIS blew up the al-Mishraq sulfur plant a few weeks ago, to slow down the advancing Iraqi army.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Veysi Kaynak expressed his hope that the cloud, capable of producing acid rain that would burn through vegetation, will not hit Turkish territory but instead “will pass by our Hakkari borders (southern Turkey) and proceed directly to the Caspian Sea.”

Turkish meteorologists were less optimistic, predicting that humidity in the area will increase, and when water merges with sulfur dioxide and water vapor, it will form sulfuric acid rain that “will burn the plants in the region.”

According to the UN, Iraqi health facilities have treated more than 1,000 cases of suffocation in the area south of Mosul, and condemned “what appears to be a scorched-earth policy employed by retreating” ISIS fighters. UNEP chief Erik Solheim said that “this is, sadly, just the latest episode in what has been the wholesale destruction of Iraq’s environment over several decades.”

Solheim added that the “ongoing ecocide is a recipe for a prolonged disaster. It makes living conditions dangerous and miserable, if not impossible. It will push countless people to join the unprecedented global refugee population.”

Naturally, there will be no discussion of this war crime at UNESCO, because the organization’s time is taken up with obliterating the memory of Jewish ties to Jerusalem.

David Israel

Israel and Turkey Delay Reconciliation, Ambassador Exchange

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

Israel and Turkey have both postponed meetings to appoint new ambassadors to each other’s countries.

The appointments were to be set at meetings scheduled for October 27, but those meetings have been cancelled in both nations, and according to a report on Israel’s Channel 2 television news, neither country has set a new date.

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas was in Ankara Tuesday for a meeting with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has long been a firm supporter of the Hamas rulers of Gaza, opponents of the PA’s leading Fatah faction headed by Abbas.

The PA leader is in Turkey for a three-day visit, according to the country’s Hurriyet Daily News, which pointed out that the visit comes “as Turkey and Israel are preparing to appoint ambassadors to each other’s capitals in a final step in the reconciliation of bilateral ties.”

The hold-up may also be due to the fact that Foreign Ministry director-general Dore Gold resigned suddenly earlier this month. Although Yuval Rotem has been appointed to take his place, Rotem’s appointment has yet to be approved by the government and until that’s done, the ministry’s appointment committee can do nothing further.

The normalization process on the Turkish side also ran into a road block last week when a Turkish court suddenly refused to dismiss the legal case against members of the Israeli military who participated in the 2010 operation to redirect an illegal flotilla to Ashdod port, and away from Gaza.

The dismissal of the case constituted Turkey’s part of the reconciliation deal signed last summer with Israel. The Jewish State has already made good on its part by expressing its regret for the incident and paying $20 million in compensation to the families of the armed “activists” on the vessel who died after attacking IDF commandos. A number of the Israeli commandos were also seriously injured in the clash, some permanently.

Turkey and Israel came to an agreement together on allowing Ankara to bring humanitarian supplies to Gaza, and to plan construction of a hospital in the region.

But when it came time last week for the Turkish court to dismiss the case against Israel’s military commandos and other IDF officials, the court apparently refused to comply with the agreement. It’s not clear what measures are being taken to deal with the situation, and there is no mention of the diplomatic faux pas in the English-language Turkish media, which reported earlier in the month that Kemal Okem had been selected to become Ankara’s ambassador to Israel. Okem is a close associate of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Israel has yet to choose its new ambassador.

Hana Levi Julian

Interfaith Encounters at Ben-Gurion Airport [video]

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

Some Muslims from Turkey traveling through Ben-Gurion airport in Israel decided to use some of their free time while waiting for their flight to pray.

The Ben-Gurion synagogue was empty at the time, so the group decided to go there, but the tourists mistook the Jewish prayer shawls (Talit, Talitot, Taleisim) in the shul for Islamic prayer rugs.

They put them on the floor and began to kneel and bow on them.

A Jewish man entered the synagogue and saw them there. He explained to the confused tourists they were kneeling on Jewish prayer shawls and they were in a Jewish synagogue.

The Muslim tourists apologized and neatly folded up the Jewish prayer shawls and put them back where they found them.

Video of the Day

Arab-Israeli Couple Arrested, Accused of Joining ISIS

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

by Ilana Messika The District Attorney in the Northern District Court in Haifa filed indictments Thursday against an Arab-Israeli couple accused of visiting an enemy country and joining the ISIS (Da’esh) terrorist organization.

Wisam and Sabrin Zabeidat of the northern Galilee community of Sakhnin were detained at Ben Gurion International Airport on September 22 upon their return from Iraq with their three children.

Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) investigators said that prior to their departure on a family holiday in June 2015, the couple watched ISIS videos and TV programs. After traveling to Romania with their children, they proceeded to Turkey by car, where a resident of the Israeli Arab village of Umm al-Fahm helped smuggle the family across the Turkish border with Syria.

The family was taken by ISIS near the Syria-Turkey border and their Israeli passports confiscated. Wisam Zabeidat was separated from his family and sent to Iraq, where he received both military training and religious indoctrination about the ideology of ISIS. Following his training, Wisam took part in operational activities of ISIS such as defending the Islamic State facilities and raids on Iraqi army positions. During one raid, he injured his leg and was treated at a hospital in Mosul.

The investigation also revealed details about unsanitary living conditions under ISIS rule. The family lived in crowded homes, often with patients suffering a variety of serious diseases, and often without access to water, electricity, food or medical care. According to reports, the children were scheduled to begin military training at the age of eight.

On June 2016, a year after their departure, the couple decided to return to Israel due to worsening conditions in Iraq. They tried to cross the border into Turkey several times and by various methods, made difficult by the extensive smuggling network that controls the passages. During one attempt they were fired upon by both the Turkish army and ISIS. Eventually, the family made it back to Turkey, but they were arrested by Turkish police and sent to a detention camp before being released after several days. The family then flew to Ben Gurion International Airport, where they were arrested upon arrival.

Statistics released in July 2016 show that many Israeli Arabs have been arrested for attempting to join the Islamic State (ISIS / Da’esh) terrorist group. More than 40 Israeli citizens have joined ISIS in the last two years, according to the Shin Bet intelligence agency, and the group has had important influence on several terror attacks in Israel in recent months. For example, the two Palestinian Authority Arab cousins who carried out a shooting attack at the Tel Aviv Sarona market were inspired by ISIS, although they had not apparently received any direct assistance or operational guidance from the group.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Kremlin Prepares for ‘Nuclear War’ As White House Considers ‘Cyber Attack’ as Middle East Hangs Between

Sunday, October 16th, 2016

Russian media is warning citizens to prepare for war – specifically, nuclear war – and ordering officials to prepare the nation’s bomb shelters and ensure that citizens have reviewed proper use of their gas masks.

“If it should one day, happen, everyone one of you should know where the nearest bomb shelter is,” said one newscaster on the state-run NTV television news channel. “It’s best to find out now.”

This past week Russia also announced a move to transfer nuclear-capable ballistic missiles to Kalininigrad, between Poland and Lithuania, its northern European enclave. The transfer places the missiles within striking distance of western European capitals.

Russia also test-fired three intercontinental ballistic missiles, and earlier this month announced it would hold joint “anti-terror” military drills with Egypt “in a desert environment.” Moscow is moving in to train with Egypt in military strategies, equipment and personnel and build a closer relationship Cairo, in a way similar to that in which it began with Syria years ago.

Moscow’s UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin claimed that tensions are at their worst since 1973, but not as bad as they were during the 1973 Yom Kippur War. “Despite the fact that we have a serious disagreement, we are continuing [to work together] in other areas – sometimes successfully,” he told reporters this weekend. However, he added that the crisis has followed a list of conflicts between the Kremlin and the White House.

“It’s a lack of basic respect,” Churkin said, “and a lack of in-depth discussions on political issues.” Among the issues he cited were the recruitment of Ukraine and Georgia for membership in NAT, and the ousting of Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych in 2014. All, he said, were incited by the United States.

The U.S., meanwhile, has said it is considering a cyber attack in retaliation for a Kremlin-backed cyber snoop into American elections, and an outright hack attack against electoral data banks and the Democratic National Headquarters. The Kremlin has warned that any such attack would be met with a “harsh response.”

A number of news analysts have said that relations between Moscow and Washington have reached their lowest point since the Cold War, in fact.

According to ABC News, Russia has conducted a nationwide civil defense drill since September that has involved some 40 million citizens, preparing them for a panoply of disasters that run the gamut of war scenarios, including nuclear fallout, and announced who would run the nation should war break out. One of the simulations involved that specific scenario, in fact.

American logic dictates that Russia would not run a civil defense drill for 40 million people for the fun of it. But Russian military analyst Pavel Felgenhauer, quoted by ABC News, says that all this is part of the grand show that may be necessary to inspire Russian lawmakers to raise a little cash for a decent military budget – which is up for renewal – when the economy is slow.

“Tensions are going to rise and rise and rise,” he said. “The good news is, no one really wants a war. But it’s going to be a good show.”

Hana Levi Julian

Israel, Turkey, Open Discussions On Natural Gas Pipeline and Explorations

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz met this week with his Turkish counterpart, Berat Albayrak, while the two were at the World Energy Congress taking place in Istanbul.

This is the first visit by an Israeli minister to Turkey since 2010, and is seen as another step in resuming diplomatic ties between the two nations.

In another week to ten days, Israel and Turkey are expected to exchange ambassadors as well.

Steinitz and Albayrak, meanwhile, have decided begin to look into the possibility of building an underwater pipeline to carry natural gas from Israel through Turkey and on into Europe.

“Exporting gas to our neighbors in the region or to Europe through different pipelines, this is of course very important, and of course one of the important options is connecting to Europe through a pipeline to Turkey,” Steinitz told reporters. “We discussed other issues of energy cooperation, but this is the most vital … We are ready to engage in the specific detailed dialogue between our two governments in the next coming months,” he said.

The pipeline would be laid along the Mediterranean sea bed, and carry Israeli gas to Turkish consumers, and then continue on to bring product for sale to Europe as well.

Steinitz told reporters at the briefing that it is estimated that the lion’s share of natural gas beneath Israel’s sovereign waters has yet to be discovered, possibly as much as 2,200 billion cubic meters of natural gas.

“This is a lot of gas — much more than we can consume,” he pointed out, adding that the gas fields are under the waters of Israel and Cyprus, and that Israel will require the cooperation of Turkey to take full advantage of the bounty that lies therein.

Albayrak is the son-in-law of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-turkey-open-discussions-on-natural-gas-pipeline-and-explorations/2016/10/13/

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