Erdogan: We are working together with other countries to break Gaza siege
ISTANBUL — Turkish premier Recep Erdogan said that his country is working alongside other countries to break the Israeli unjust siege on the Gaza Strip and to rebuild what was destroyed during the war. This came during his meeting on Monday in Istanbul with a delegation representing a number of European civil organizations including the European campaign to end the siege and the Palestinian return center. Erdogan stressed that breaking the blockade on Gaza is a priority for him and Turkey and that he is working with other countries to end it. The delegation discussed with the premier the avenues to end the siege and the importance of the Turkish role in the region.
The two parties also talked about Israel’s new membership in the organization for economic cooperation and development and the need to oblige Israel to lift its blockade on Gaza and respect human rights as a precondition for accession into any international body.
Director of the Palestinian return center Majid Al-Zeer criticized the international community for rewarding Israel for committing massacres and crimes against humanity with allowing it to join international organizations without having to meet the minimum human rights commitments. Zeer also called for more European parliamentary efforts to isolate Israel internationally until it ends its unjust siege on Gaza and stop all its crimes against Palestinians, asserting that any attempt to strengthen the position of Israel internationally would encourage it to commit more crimes and violations.
In the same context, MP Jamal Al-Khudari, the head of the popular committee against the siege, hailed the Turkish premier for his strenuous efforts to break the blockade on Gaza and alleviate the suffering of its people. Khudari said in a press release on Tuesday that Turkey has always adopted admirable positions toward the Palestinian people, especially its ongoing effort to end the blockade and support poor families, graduates, and the unemployed. The lawmaker denounced Israel for arresting Turkish human rights activists who provide humanitarian services for the Palestinians in the West Bank.
Under the coordination of the Free Gaza Movement, numerous human rights organizations, including the Turkish relief foundation (IHH), the Perdana global peace organization from Malaysia, the European campaign to end the siege, and European institutions will send later this month three cargo ships loaded with reconstruction, medical and educational supplies. At least five passenger boats with over 600 people on board will accompany the cargo ships. These passengers include members of parliament from around the world, UN officials, human rights and trade union activists, as well as journalists who will document the largest coordinated effort aimed to confront Israel’s illegal blockade of Gaza.