Netanyahu: Turkey Agreement ‘Immense’ for Israeli Economy

In this handout provided by the Israeli Government Press Office, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) talks with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry as they meet December 15, 2014 in Rome, Italy.

The Times of Israel reports: The reconciliation deal with Turkey will dramatically boost Israel’s economy, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday during a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Rome, hours before he was expected to present the full terms of the agreement.

“I think it’s an important step here to normalize relations on one side. It has also immense implications for the Israeli economy… and I mean positive immense implications,” Netanyahu said, sitting next to Kerry at the American embassy in Rome.

The prime minister hinted that Israel’s natural gas reserves were a crucial element of the pact with Turkey, but did not elaborate.

Requiring months of negotiations, the rapprochement agreement is repair years of bristly relations following a deadly IDF 2010 raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla.

Previously tight relations between Israel and Turkey were significantly downgraded after Israeli commandos staged a raid on the six-ship flotilla –which was trying to breach Israel’s security blockade of the Hamas-run Strip — intercepting the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara.

Read more here