Turkey, Israel ‘to announce normalization on June 26’

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Middle East
Tuesday, 21 June 2016


Turkey and Israel are to announce an agreement on the normalization of their bilateral ties, which would end six years of a freeze in the relations, a report says.

Reporting on Tuesday, Turkey’s Hurriyet daily said the two sides would make the announcement during final talks on the issue on June 26.

In September 2010, Turkey suspended its military ties with Israel and expelled the Israeli envoy from Ankara over Tel Aviv’s refusal to apologize over its killing of nine Turkish nationals aboard an aid vessel bound for Israeli-seiged Gaza. A tenth Turk later died of the injuries sustained in the raid.

Ankara conditioned the normalization on an Israeli apology, compensation for the victims, and Tel Aviv’s lifting of its siege on the Gaza Strip. Israel has reportedly met the first two demands and alleged it would take moves aimed at easing the plight of the Gazans.

Turkey and Israel see eye to eye on the conflict in Syria and the need to topple President Bashar al-Assad.

Turkey stands accused of supporting the militants that are fighting against the government in Syria by, among other things, allowing them safe passage into the Arab country via Turkish territory. Israel, for its part, has set up hospitals near the border with Syria to treat militants injured in fighting with Syrian troops.

Tel Aviv and Ankara have been holding fence-mending talks in Switzerland.

The pending announcement would be made after talks between senior Turkish Foreign Ministry official Feridun Sinirlioglu and Israel’s pointman on Turkish relations, Joseph Ciechanover.

The two diplomats would then meet again in July to formally sign an agreement, after which ambassadors would return to the respective embassies and full ties would be restored.

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