Israel PM keeps up refusal to apologise to Turkey

JERUSALEM — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday kept up Israel’s refusal to apologise to Turkey over his country’s May 2010 raid on an aid flotilla bound for Gaza that killed nine Turkish activists.

By (AFP)

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Published: Mon 22 Aug 2011, 9:19 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 8:53 AM

‘The prime minister has not changed his stand over Israel not apologising,’ Netanyahu’s office said in a statement.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu warned on Saturday that relations with Israel will further deteriorate without an apology from the Jewish state over its commando raid.

‘There can be no normalisation with Israel if Turkey’s demands are not met,’ the Anatolia news agency quoted him as saying during a visit to South Africa.

Diplomatic ties between Israel and Turkey have been in crisis since Israeli commandos staged the raid on the international aid flotilla trying to reach Gaza in defiance of an Israeli naval blockade on the Palestinian territory.

Nine Turkish nationals were killed in the operation, and Turkey says its once-close relationship with the Jewish state can only be restored with an apology for the deaths.

According to Turkish diplomats, Ankara could further downgrade its representation in Tel Aviv. It maintained a charge d’affaires in Tel Aviv after recalling its ambassador following the raid.

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