Two days after Turkey announced its reconciliation agreement with Israel, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan went on the offensive against the IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation, the organization behind the May 2010 flotilla to Gaza Strip that sparked the crisis between Jerusalem and Ankara. “Did you ask me before you set sail? Did you ask my permission,” Erdogan said at Wednesday’s iftar meal.
In recent days the NGO has voiced serious criticism of Erdogan for reconciling ties with Israel.
“When you set sail you need to ask me. Did you ask the prime minister before you embarked on a humanitarian mission from Turkey to Gaza?” Erdogan asked. “[After the agreement] we have guarantees from Israel that it will authorize the entrance of humanitarian aid we send to Gaza.”
Earlier Wednesday, U.S. President Barack Obama called Erdogan and praised him and the Turkish delegation for reaching an accord with Israel. In March 2013, during his visit to Israel, Obama orchestrated a telephone conversation between Netanyahu and Erdogan, during which Israel apologized for the events of the Gaza flotilla.
The Israeli security cabinet approved the reconciliation agreement with Turkey by a vote of seven to three on Wednesday afternoon.
Two ministers at the meeting told Haaretz the debate lasted more than four hours and was one of the most serious and in depth sessions ever held by the current cabinet.[Source: Haaretz]