Erdoğan doing everything to make Israel regret apology: Israeli far-right leader
Naftali Bennett is the new economy and trade minister in PM Benjamin Netanyahu's new Cabinet. AFP photoThe leader of Israel's far-right Jewish Home party, Naftali Bennet, slammed Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's comments following his counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu's apology for the Mavi Marmara killings, Israeli media reported March 27.
"It seems that since [Netanyahu's] apology, Erdoğan is doing everything to make Israel regret it," Bennett, the economy and trade minister in Netanyahu's new Cabinet, wrote on his official Facebook page, according to Jerusalem Post. "He is running a personal and vitriolic campaign at the expense of Israeli-Turkish relations," he said.
Erdoğan said Turkey had insisted on the word "apology" and that Israel's statement met with Ankara's demands.
Bennett implicitly defended the Mavi Marmara raid in 2010 that resulted with the death of nine Turkish citizens, saying Israel's response would not be "less severe" if it encountered any "future terrorism." "Let there be no doubt – no nation is doing Israel a favor by renewing ties," he wrote, concluding his comments by paying tribute to Israeli soldiers.
Bennett had previously described Turkey as "an important ally," calling for a reduction the tensions during a January interview with daily Hürriyet. However he had declined to discuss the apology issue.
Meanwhile Netanyahu also faces criticism from a hawkish member of his own Likud Party. Deputy Knesset Speaker Moshe Feiglin argued that the apology would only bring more conflict. "It was a big mistake. The more you tell Arabs that they are the right side, the more violence will increase," he said.