Rassegna Stampa Elezioni Israeliane 2009

Monitoraggio attraverso i media internazionali delle elezioni in Israele del Febbraio 2009

Erdogan says ready to mediate peace talks between Israel, Syria

Posted by claudiacampli su 27 marzo, 2009

Haaretz

Turkey’s prime minister reiterated on Friday his readiness to resume mediation of Israeli-Syrian peace negotiations that were disrupted in late December by the Israeli military operation in the Gaza Strip, according to a report by AFP.

“If [Israel and Syria] make such a request to Turkey, we will do our best [to mediate],” Erdogan told the Anatolia news agency in a television interview.

“We are determined to do whatever we can for peace in the Middle East… All issues should be resolved at the negotiating table,” he said.

Last month, Erdogan said his government remains committed to mediating a peace deal between Israel and Palestinians despite an angry public exchange earlier this year with Israeli President Shimon Peres.

Erdogan also said UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon phoned him to ask him to continue Turkey’s role as a Middle East mediator.

Erdogan accused Peres on January 30 of “knowing very well how to kill” during a panel discussion, that included Ban and the Arab League’s Amr Moussa, on the Israeli incursion in Gaza at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Erdogan then stormed off the stage.

“If a demand arises from the parties, we again would shoulder this mission (of mediation),” Erdogan told members of his party in parliament.

“The role of mediation does not prevent us from telling the truth. We don’t voice our criticisms only to Israel, we tell every side, including Hamas.”

Turkey, a predominantly, non-Arab Muslim country that belongs to NATO, has close military and commercial ties with Israel. It has also helped negotiate a Hamas-led ceasefire that ended the rocket attacks that Israel said forced it to launch the incursion into Gaza in December.

Turkey has also led indirect talks between Israel and Syria and sent peacekeeping troops to southern Lebanon.

Last month, an Israeli government official said that Turkey’s role in mediating the Israeli-Arab conflict has been compromised by its leader’s repeated censure of Israel’s offensive in the Gaza Strip.

Erdogan also said Tuesday that criticism of Israel does not amount to
anti-Semitism but that his country guarantees the rights and safety of its Jewish population.

The small Jewish community says it is in contact with Turkish police and lawmakers because of safety concerns after the Gaza war.

Erdogan said that the country has no history of anti-Semitism and described it as a crime against humanity.

A statement from the Jewish community says it welcomes Erdogan’s condemnation of anti-Semitism. But it expresses concern about what it calls harshly anti-Semitic rhetoric in some television programs.

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