During a special session of the 57-member OIC on Friday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is rotating president of the organization, accused the Jewish state of “thuggery, violence and state terror,” drawing parallels between Israel’s suppression of Palestinian protesters and Nazi persecution of the Jews.
“The children of those who were subjected to all sorts of torture in concentration camps during World War II are now attacking Palestinians with methods that would put Nazis to shame,” he told Muslim leaders.
The Turkish president also lambasted the United States for endorsing Israel’s “occupation and apartheid policies” by transferring the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which he considers a “harbinger of a new operation against the Muslim world.” Erdogan went on to say that Washington had “Palestinian blood on its hands.”
A total of 60 Palestinians have been killed and more than 2,400 injured during the clashes with Israeli Defense Forces as the Great March of Return turned violent following the US Embassy’s relocation from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
In wake of the reported violence, Erdogan said that Ankara had decided to recall its ambassadors in Tel Aviv and Washington for consultations, having accused Israel of “state terror” and “genocide.” On Tuesday, Turkey expelled the Israeli ambassador, Eitan Naeh, who, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was subjected to a “humiliating” security check at Istanbul airport.
Apparently, the Israeli ambassador was requested by security personnel at Istanbul airport to take off his shoes while the Turkish press is watching— Noa Landau (@noa_landau) 16 мая 2018 г.
In retaliation, Israel asked the Turkish consul general in Jerusalem, Husnu Gurcan Turkoglu, who was tasked with establishing Ankara’s ties with the Palestinians, to leave the country “for a while.”
War of Words
Erdogan and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exchanged accusations over the violence in the Gaza Strip, with the Turkish president calling his Israeli counterpart “the PM of an apartheid state,” who “has the blood of Palestinians on his hands.”
Netanyahu is the PM of an apartheid state that has occupied a defenseless people's lands for 60+ yrs in violation of UN resolutions.— Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (@RT_Erdogan) 15 мая 2018 г.
He has the blood of Palestinians on his hands and can't cover up crimes by attacking Turkey.
Want a lesson in humanity? Read the 10 commandments.
Netanyahu, in turn, slammed Erdogan for the “occupation of northern Cyprus” and “invading Syria.”
“A man who sends thousands of Turkish soldiers to hold the occupation of northern Cyprus and invades Syria will not preach to us when we defend ourselves from an attempt by Hamas. A man whose hands are stained with the blood of countless Kurdish citizens in Turkey and Syria is the last to preach to us about combat ethics,” Netanyahu tweeted.
אדם ששולח אלפי חיילים טורקים לקיים את הכיבוש של צפון קפריסין ופולש לסוריה, לא יטיף לנו כשאנו מגינים על עצמנו מניסיון פלישה של חמאס. אדם שידיו מגואלות בדם של אינספור אזרחים כורדים בטורקיה ובסוריה הוא האחרון שיכול להטיף לנו על מוסר לחימה— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) 15 мая 2018 г.
Erdogan is among Hamas's biggest supporters and there is no doubt that he well understands terrorism and slaughter. I suggest that he not preach morality to us— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) 15 мая 2018 г.
Back in 2010, diplomatic relations between the two states were marred by an Israeli naval raid on the Turkish-owned Mavi Marmara aid ship attempting to breach the blockade of the Gaza Strip. In the incident, Israeli naval commandos killed nine Turkish activists that allegedly attacked them on board the ship.
In 2013, Netanyahu voiced regret over the deadly incident to Erdogan; in September 2016, Israel paid $20 million in compensation to the families of the victims as part of an agreement reached in August, which contributed to the improvement of bilateral relations after a six-year-long diplomatic crisis.