Daily Israel Report

Erdogan Accuses Israel of 'State Terrorism'

Turkish Prime Minister attacks Israel, as rockets continue to rain on civilians and Hamas rejects ceasefire.
By AFP and Tova Dvorin
First Publish: 7/15/2014, 1:54 PM / Last Update: 7/15/2014, 8:29 PM

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan
AFP/File

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan fired more accusations at Israel on Tuesday, even after Israel accepted a cease-fire agreement that saw Hamas rain tens of missiles on innocent Israeli civilians in its wake. 

"Israel is continuing to carry out state terrorism in the region. Nobody, except us, tells it to stop," Erdogan told members of his ruling party in parliament, accusing Israel of perpetrating a "massacre" of Palestinians.

"To what extent will the world remain silent to this state terrorism?" he asked. "What's the difference between this mentality and that of Hitler?" 

Meanwhile, over 30 rockets have rained on Israel in three hours on Tuesday, after Israel accepted a cease-fire proposal from Egypt and agreed to halt its self-defense operation, Operation Protective Edge

Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zahri reiterated shortly after the truce announcement that it is uninterested in attacking the Israeli civilian population - despite the fact that all of Hamas's rockets have been aimed at civilian population centers. The group's propaganda has also openly threatened Israeli civilians.

"The idea of ​​disarmament is not subject to discussion," he said, adding that "the Palestinians are on occupied land, so it has a legitimate right to resist." 

In a statement issued around the same time, Hamas said it did not consider itself obliged by the Egyptian proposal.

"Because we were excluded from the consultations for this (truce) initiative, we are not obliged to abide by it," it said.

Erdogan has become increasingly more vocal over the operation, and threatened to end the normalization process with Israel.

Erdogan also accused Israel of "lies" because "not enough" Israeli Jews have died in the conflict. 

"They say (Hamas) is firing rockets. But is there anybody who died?" he asked. "The number of Palestinians that you (Israel) killed is now 100. Their (Israel's) life is based on lies." 

"You will first stop this oppression. If not, it is not possible to realize normalization between Turkey and Israel," Erdogan said, on a separate occasion. 

As of Tuesday night, no contacts have been made with Israel so far, a Turkish official told AFP.

"Concrete steps can only be taken after Israel stops its assault on Gaza," the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Erdogan himself has also had a long public record of anti-Semitic statements, including several recently despite efforts to normalize relations.

Several months ago, Erdogan kicked and beat a protestor who approached the premier over the May 2014 Soma mine disaster. 

"Why are you running away from me - Israeli sperm!" he shrieked, slapping the protester, in video footage uploaded to Sozcu TV. The word "sperm" is seen as a particularly offensive insult in Turkish. The footage later shows security forces beating the man.

In 1998, prior to his stint as PM, Erdogan - then mayor of Istanbul - infamously declared that "the Jews have begun to crush the Muslims in Palestine, in the name of Zionism. Today, the image of the Jews is no different than that of the Nazis."

More recently, Erdogan accused Israel of being behind the ouster of Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohammed Morsi.