Turkey Presses Diplomatic Offensive Against Israel

Turkey Israel
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Turkey continued its diplomatic assault against Israel on Thursday as it sought to line up the United Nations and the International Criminal Court to press allegations of massacres at the Gaza border this week.

Turkey’s foreign minister said that Israel should be tried at the International Criminal Court in the Hague for “massacring” Palestinians, and said Ankara was actively helping the Palestinian Authority prepare a lawsuit.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told Turkey’s state broadcaster TRT that “since third parties cannot do it, Palestine needs to initiate this.”

The Palestinians joined the ICC as a member and signed the Rome statute in 2014, meaning that the Palestinian Authority can sue Israel in The Hague.

“We are analyzing what kind of legal steps can be taken,” he said, according to Turkey’s Hurriyet daily, adding that his country was giving legal aid to the Palestinians.

Cavusoglu also urged the U.N. General Assembly to pass a resolution on Yerushalayim, after the U.S. inaugurated its new embassy in the capital. Details on what the resolution might say were not immediately available.

Meanwhile, Arab League chief Ahmed Abul Gheit on Thursday called for an international probe into alleged “crimes” committed by Israeli security forces in their response to disorders at the Gaza border.

“We call for a credible international investigation into the crimes committed by the occupation,” Abul Gheit said at the opening session of an extraordinary meeting of Arab foreign ministers in Cairo to discuss the matter.