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POLITICS > We want justice in Gaza, says Turkish PM

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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has accused Israel of deliberately striking Gaza ahead of the elections in both 2008 and today, but urged that “the conditions of 2012 are different than they were in 2008.” He also called for an immediate cease-fire to be observed.

“Israel also attacked Gaza in 2008 prior to elections. Now elections are coming again and it is doing the same thing” Erdoğan told a Turkish-Egyptian Business Forum in Cairo today.

“I am calling on [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu. We are not in 2008. We are in 2012 and conditions are different than 2008. Make your calculations correctly,” Anatolia news agency quoted him as saying.

Call for immediate truce

Erdoğan reiterated that a cease-fire should be declared immediately. “I’m calling on Israel and Gaza to provide a cease-fire immediately, within 24 hours. Extending the situation won’t bring anything to either side,” he said.

He criticized Western powers for wanting to pull the Arab world to pieces. “While Israel is attacking and sabotaging the peace, there will be no security or stability for any country in the region,” he said.

Erdoğan said Turkey wished to see a cease-fire declared in Gaza immediately, while Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi told him that there were “some indications” a ceasefire could be reached soon, but said he had no firm guarantees.

“The party using disproportionate force is obvious,” Erdoğan said in a press conference with Morsi following the meeting of Turkey-Egypt High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council in Cairo on Nov. 17, according to Reuters. “Humanity will not forgive this if sovereign countries defend injustice under the guise of preserving Israel and its security,” he said.

“This hypocrisy should end. These double standards should end,” Erdoğan said.

“I had a telephone conversation with U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin on the issue. I asked them to convince Israel and to give an important assurance. Israel did not accord with the previous Cairo ceasefire agreement, and I told them that this could not be repeated again.” Erdoğan also met the Arab League’s Secretary General Nabil Elaraby and Qatar’s Emir Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani yesterday, in order to discuss the situation in Gaza.

November/18/2012

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