Israel, Turkey to restore diplomacy
JERUSALEM — Israel and Turkey agreed to restore full diplomatic relations on Friday because Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu apologized in a phone call for a deadly naval raid against a Gaza-bound international flotilla.
Joint interests between the two countries, including fears that the Syrian civil war could spill over their respective borders, and some cajoling by President Obama made the time ripe to repair the frayed relations after nearly three years of acrimony over the deaths.
It was a surprising turnaround for Netanyahu, who had long rejected calls to apologize.
He announced the breakthrough after a 20-minute phone conversation with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Obama helped broker the fence-mending while visiting Israel, but the sides had been reaching out to each other before.
“They agreed to restore normalization between Israel and Turkey, including the dispatch of ambassadors and the cancellation of legal steps against Israeli soldiers,” a statement from Netanyahu's office said. Netanyahu “regretted the recent deterioration of relations between Israel and Turkey and expressed his commitment to overcoming their differences in order to advance peace and stability in the region,” it said.
The statement stressed that the bloodshed was not intentional and suggested that relatives of those killed would get compensation.
Erdogan's office said: “Our prime minister accepted the apology in the name of the Turkish people.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mementos unearthed at Nazi death camp in Poland
- Turkish hostages freed from Islamic State, but questions linger
- Egyptian President al-Sisi feels vindicated in crackdown as Islamic extremists rise
- Islamic State link with well-heeled companies or individuals targeted
- NATO chief: Ukraine truce ‘in name only’
- London must keep promises to Scotland, former Prime Minister Brown says
- Economic powers at odds on stimulus as G20 gathers
- Yemeni government and Houthi rebels reach agreement, U.N. envoy says
- Islamic State frees 49 hostages
- Venezuelan police chief freed from jail
- Scottish teens surprise in independence vote