Turkey warns Israel of ‘sanctions’
“There is an action, a crime here. Turkey’s demand is rather lucid. Since there is a death, the killing side is acknowledged and an international commission should be formed and make its decision with respect to this fact in the frame of objective provisions of law. If Israel does not want an international commission, then it has to acknowledge this crime, apologize, and pay compensation,” Davutoglu said in an interview published in the Newsweek magazine on July 9.
The top Turkish diplomat made the comments after the recent Israeli attack on the aid fleet seeking to break the siege of Gaza Strip. The deadly attack in the international waters of the Mediterranean Sea claimed the lives of nine Turkish citizens.
“If the international community and the international law do not ask about the causes of these deaths, we, as the government of the Republic of Turkey, have the right to ask. Turkey-Israel relations will never be on a normal footing until we have an answer. And Turkey has the right to one-sidedly apply its own sanctions,” the Turkish top diplomat added.
“If the right steps are not taken (by Israel), the relations would go in the direction of a break-off process. However, I cannot share with you what I have told them behind closed doors. They know what kind of sanctions we would impose,” Davutoglu said.
Asked about Ankara’s “zero-tension policy” with Turkey’s neighbor countries and the recent escalation of tensions with Israel, Davutoglu said: “Zero problems with neighbors is a value. But another equally important value is to establish peace. If any actor blocks peace processes, keeps civilians under blockade, massacres civil people on international waters, the peace value could not be disregarded for the sake of zero problems with neighbors. These policies of Israel are a menace to regional peace. Excusing these policies that go against peace just to develop zero-problem relations is out of the question.”