Turkey/Israeli War of Words - by Stephen Lendman
A previous article discussed release of the leaked UN Palmer Commission's report on Israel's May 2010 Mavi Marmara massacre, killing nine Turkish nationals in cold blood.
Access it through the following link:
Ever since, Turkey demanded an apology and compensation for loved ones of those killed. In fact, Israel never says it's sorry, even when caught red-handed. Turkey called it unacceptable, warning of sanctions and other consequences.
On September 2, they began, Istanbul's Today's Zaman headlining, "Turkey downgrades diplomatic ties with Israel after UN report leak," saying:
"Ankara has slammed Israel with sanctions of reduced diplomatic ties and a hold on all military agreements" after the UN report was leaked to The New York Times.
Calling it "null and void," Turkey's President Abdullah Gul said sanctions are only "initial steps" against Israel for refusing to apologize.
They include expelling Israel's ambassador, Gabby Levy, and his deputy, Ella Afek, (effective September 7), downgrading diplomatic representation in both countries to first secretary level ahead of possible severing them, if only short-term.
After Israel's May 31, 2010 massacre, Turkey withdrew its ambassador from Israel, leaving its embassy operational solely at the envoy level.
Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said:
"Israel squandered all of the opportunities to end the crisis, and now it must pay for it." He correctly added that Israel's blockade is illegal, the Palmer Commission's whitewash notwithstanding.
Davutoglu also said Turkey will "do whatever it takes to implement its interpretation of the significance of international waters in the Mediterranean. We cannot accept the blockade of Gaza. We cannot say that the blockade aligns with international law."
Moreover, the Palmer Commission's biased conclusion "does not correspond (to) Turkey's...."
Davutoglu additionally announced cancellation of all defense contracts between Israel and Turkey, saying Ankara will also initiate legal action to end Gaza's siege in international courts as well as help aggrieved families file lawsuits.
Unless Israel changes positions and apologizes, "we will put Plan B into play," Davutoglu said, adding only that Israel and other international parties are aware of what's coming.