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Turkey: Israel must pay price for raid on flotilla

09-14-2011 14:22 BJT

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Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Israel has isolated itself and must "pay the price" for not apologizing for its raid on the Gaza-bound aid flotilla.

He made the remarks during a visit to Cairo, where he delivered a speech on the strained relations between Turkey and Israel. But, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded by saying the relations would smoothen out soon.

Tough talk. Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed the deteriorating Israeli-Turkish ties in a speech to Arab foreign ministers in Cairo. He said Israel has isolated itself and must "pay the price".

Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, "The conditions we have set are still in effect and must be met in order for Turkish-Israeli relations to return to normal. So long as Israel does not apologize, so long as they do not pay reparations to the victims' families, so long as they do not lift their naval blockade of Gaza, Turkish-Israeli relations will not return to normal."

Erdogan was given a warm reception in Cairo. During the 30-minute speech, he was interrupted several times by applause. Meanwhile, in response, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was optimistic that relations could be smoothed over.

Benjamin Netanyahu said, "I recommend not getting lured into making all kinds of remarks. I think that common sense and cool-headedness will prevail eventually, hopefully, on both sides".

Turkey has been angered over Israel's refusal to apologize for its raid on an aid flotilla last year in which 9 Turkish activists were killed.

In response, Turkey this month suspended its military ties with Israel, expelled top Israeli diplomats, and pledged to campaign in support of the Palestinians' UN statehood bid.

Prime Minister Erdogan also vowed to send the Turkish navy to escort Gaza-bound aid ships in the future.

 

Editor:Liu Fang |Source: CNTV.CN

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