Israel Tells Turkey’s Erdogan: Stop Destabilizing the Region

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan gestures as he delivers a speech following a cabinet meeting, in Ankara, on June 9, 2020. (Photo by Adem ALTAN / AFP) (Photo by ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images)
ADEM ALTAN/AFP via Getty Images

In a rare diplomatic rebuke Sunday, Israel’s defense minister accused Turkey of destabilizing the region and called on the international community to put pressure on Ankara to “pull their hands from direct terrorism.”

Defense Minister Benny Gantz lumped Turkey and Iran together as “denying promotion of peace and supporting regional aggression, ” while Ajlan al-Ajlan, the head of Saudi Arabia’s Chamber of Commerce, declared in a statement a full boycott of all Turkish products was now “the responsibility of every Saudi.”

Both spoke in the wake of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan calling Jerusalem “our city” during an address to Turkish lawmakers, as Breitbart Jerusalem reported.

“In this city, which we had to leave in tears during the First World War, it is still possible to come across traces of the Ottoman resistance. So Jerusalem is our city, a city from us,” Erdoğan said at the opening of the Turkish parliament’s legislative session on Thursday.

Erdoğan was referring to the Ottoman Empire’s four-century rule over Jerusalem from 1517-1917.

He noted Islam’s first prayer direction was towards the al-Aqsa mosque and the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem before being redirected to the Kaaba in Mecca.

Erdogan has often charged that Israel is attempting to “Judaize” Jerusalem. Jerusalem has been the heart of Jewish life dating back thousands of years.

“Another crisis that our country and our nation carefully follow is the oppression of Israel against the Palestinians and the indifferent practices that disregard the privacy of Jerusalem,” Erdogan said.

“The issue of Jerusalem is not an ordinary geopolitical problem for us. First of all, the current physical appearance of the Old City, which is the heart of Jerusalem, was built by Suleiman the Magnificent, with its walls, bazaar, and many buildings. Our ancestors showed their respect for centuries by keeping this city in high esteem.”

Erdogan did not mention that Suleiman very likely had a Jewish mother and was a protector of his Jewish subjects.

“We consider it an honor on behalf of our country and nation to express the rights of the oppressed Palestinian people on every platform, with whom we have lived for centuries.”
“With this understanding, we will follow both the Palestinian cause, which is the bleeding wound of the global conscience, and the Jerusalem case to the end,” he said.

 

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